The former MLS All-Star defender took only four months out of the professional game to beat cancer.
After being granted indefinite leave on April 8th to receive treatment for leukaemia, New England Revolution defender Kevin Alston made his triumphant comeback on Saturday in a 2-1 win over DC United in his home city.
Alston had been diagnosed with chronic myelogenous leukaemia, an extremely rare yet treatable form of the illness. A mere four months after beginning treatment, Alston returned for the Revolution to help them see out the final ten minutes of their match against United and seal the win.
“It was unbelievable,” Alston told MLSsoccer.com. “My parents were there, my brother was there, my grandfather was there, all my family and friends [were there]. It made it special to be able to do it in front of them.”
Alston grew up just a few miles from United’s RFK Stadium in Washington DC and, upon replacing Dimitry Imbongo in the 84th minute the emotion was palpable.
“It was the best,” Revolution defender Chris Tierney said. “It gave us all a boost. Everyone knows what he’s been through. He’s an inspiration for all of us. We all feed off the energy that he brings every day. We’re all super proud of him. It’s great to see him back. Hopefully, we’ll be seeing a lot more of him.”
“As soon as the game was over, everybody came over to congratulate me,” Alston said. “I was trying my hardest not to cry. I was fighting tears. They’ve been supportive since the start and they showed it again tonight.”