Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Pat Summitt with early signs of dementia

Pat Summitt and Sadie/UT photo
Chilling news out of Knoxville, where News-Sentinal reporter Dan Fleser reveals that Tennessee coach Pat Summitt has been diagnosed with early onset dementia, a destruction of brain cells that leads to a gradual decline in cognitive abilities. Summitt said her grandmother had severe dementia. (The Washington Post also delivers a compelling take on the subject authored by Sally Jenkins, a close friend and co-author of the book "Reach for the Summitt.")

Summitt said she plans to continue coaching, and it sounds as though she's ready to combat the disease with the same vigor and determination she's applied to opposing teams for so many years. Said Summitt: "There's not going to be any pity party and I'll make sure of that."

Click here to read several classy tributes to Summitt from the women's basketball community.

Click here to read Summitt's assistant coaches discussing how the program will move forward.

The following is a video statement from Summitt released through the Tennessee athletic department.

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