Freshman Athlete Battling Leg Cancer

School, sports, homework, sleep, repeat: the once normal schedule for freshman athlete David Robbins. Back in late March, Robbins was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer found in his lower leg.

Every year in the United States, approximately 400 cases of osteosarcoma are found in children and teenagers between the ages of 10 and 30, making it a common cancer in the young. According to, osteosarcoma is frequently found on the sides of knees and arms, making bones fragile and vulnerable to breaking. Treatment requires surgery and chemotherapy.

Robbins noticed a buildup of osteosarcoma symptoms during his transition from the basketball season to the volleyball season. Robbins said, “The doctors said it could be a tumor and kept saying the worst case is it’s cancer, so I wasn’t as shocked.”

Since April 11, Robbins has received chemotherapy treatment in the hospital every two weeks. Robbins is hooked up to an IV which distributes a chemotherapy drug that transfers throughout his body. After a few hours, Robbins gets another IV of water to clear the drug from his body. One session has lasted up to five days.

Along with pre-IB classes, Robbins is also a shooting guard for the JV boys basketball team as well as a middle hitter for the varsity boys volleyball team.

Volleyball head coach Sean Pang said, “I feel like David’s always been with us; even when he is tired and losing his strength, he still came to our practices and our games to support our team.”

Robbins began playing volleyball this year. Although happy to try a new sport, Robbins is most interested in playing basketball. Robbins has been playing since he was three years old and plays for both the JV boys team as well as a club team outside of school. Robbins said, “I’m a talkative person and I really don’t like not being allowed to play basketball.”

With Robbins often out of school and in the hospital, his teammates and friends continue to support him. Varsity basketball player Brian Ball showed his support by shaving his head.

Freshman Yuni Higgs said, “I was one of the first people he told and it was really hard to see him in that position. He was really scared at first, but he’s really strong and has gotten through a lot. Kick cancer’s butt, David!”