In the midst of the Deflategate scandal in 2016, Tom Brady got a wake-up call about what really matters.
In June of that year, Brady’s mother Galynn was diagnosed with breast cancer and myeloma. The news sent the Brady family into a tailspin, the New York Post reports. And all of the drama surrounding Deflategate did nothing to ease Galynn’s stress.
“I think, personally, that was very difficult for her to see her son kind of raked through the coals like I was,” Brady said recently.
Tom Brady Recounts Mother’s Cancer Battle
“I remember getting a call. I don’t remember exactly when, but there were some concerns that she had ’cause she wasn’t feeling great for a period of time,” Brady said, per the Post.
Brady’s sister Nancy added that “there was a lot of pain during that time” for the Brady family. She said she thought her mom “probably internalized a lot of things” from the Deflategate scandal.
As if Deflategate wasn’t bad enough, Galynn went in for a checkup and found out from doctors that she had cancer and myeloma, which is a cancer that develops in white blood cells known as plasma cells. The cancerous plasma cells then build up in bone marrow and push out healthy blood cells that the body needs to attack germs, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Doctors sometimes put off treating myeloma, suggesting close monitoring of the condition instead, but in the case of the breast cancer they pursued treatment options right away.
Pictures taken at the time show Galynn wearing head coverings due to the effects of the chemotherapy she had to undergo. But chemo or no, she was there in Houston for Super Bowl 51 to watch her son win his fifth Super Bowl ring.
Brady Had an Epiphany on a Golf Course
As a gesture of love and support for Galynn, the Brady family decided to take a trip to Pebble Beach to go golfing. With all of them gathered at the picturesque California golf course, Brady says a realization struck him about what really matters in life.
“My wife was walking out with my daughter Vivian. I had my nieces and nephews running up and down the fairway on the 18th,” Brady recounted. “The Pacific Ocean’s on the left, waves are crashing and I was reflecting and having some perspective on the situation and realizing that this is what matters most. Being with my family at a very vulnerable time. I was gonna do my best to forget about football for a little bit and catch up on some other aspects of my life.”
After that moment, the Super Bowl was just icing on the cake. But Brady says it was still special to have his mom there to witness his win and to celebrate along with him.
“You know, that year had its challenging aspects and the way that it culminated with us all being together,” Brady added. “After the game with my mom, just, you know, giving her a big hug, and my dad and everyone was crying. It was just a really emotional time. We won the game, but my mom won, too. My family won, too.”