With his wholesome clean-cut good looks, seven-time Tour de France champion title wins, high-profile cancer survivor and advocate, Founder and Chairman of ($500 Million) Livestrong cancer charity, Lance Armstrong is dropped by his sponsors and steps down as Chairman of Livestrong, all because of a doping scandal.  On or before October 31st The International Cycling Union must decide whether or not to strip Armstrong of his Tour titles.  Life as he knows it, has come to a screeching halt…

Lance Armstrong stands for so many things for so many people.  He’s an athlete, a winner, a cancer survivor and motivational mentor for those with cancer.  His charity gives financial hope to those with excessive medical bills relating to cancer.  Even today, after 15 years of founding the Livestrong charity, people are wearing the ubiquitous yellow Livestrong wrist bands and apparel. 

Armstrong is now banned from professional racing and there are talks he will soon be stripped of his seven-time Tour De France titles.  The myriad of sponsors have dropped him completely, and for the good of his cancer charity, he has stepped down as Chairman.  I’m mostly surprised at Nike.  They didn’t drop Tiger Woods or Kobe Bryant when they were caught cheating and scandal broke out.  Nike stuck by them.  “Armstrong is accused of running one of the most sophisticated, elaborate, professionalized and successful doping programs in sports history.”  His own teammates testified against him and he decided to stop fighting it.  It must be exhausting, and costly, guilty or not.  His name and his brand are tarnished.  His life, reduced to crumbs.  He’s been through worse, he survived cancer.

Is Livestrong bigger than Lance?  I don’t think so.  Whenever I see ‘Livestrong’ either on apparel or as a wrist band, I always think of Lance Armstrong.  Will the cancer charity continue to grow and be effective without him? That remains to be seen.  Hopefully they do continue to thrive.

As for Lance, even when all signs point to guilty, he stands tall with his not guilty plea.  At this point it really doesn’t matter if he doped or not, he’s paying the price as if guilty.  It’s going to get worse before it gets better, but he’ll be OK.  He will adapt and overcome.  Like Martha Stewart and Steve Jobs who were fired and stepped down from their empires, I  have to believe Lance Armstrong will emerge bigger and better than ever before.  He is unstoppable and immeasurable.  He is not a quitter.  The fact remains that Lance Armstrong was never found positive by the anti-doping laboratories.

“Pain Is Temporary, Quitting Lasts Forever” – Lance Armstrong

Come on Lance, get back up and get on with it.  Turn this around in true Armstrong style!

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