Watching Tide Hoops giving hope to man facing lung cancer diagnosis

While in Louisville for the NCSS Sweet 16, WVUA 23 News met a special couple who traveled there for the first time so they could make some very special memories.

This is one of those stories that puts a lot of things in perspective.

Before the Alabama men’s basketball team was beaten by the San Diego State Aztecs in the NCAA Sweet 16, it was an exciting time for Alabama fans. The 2022-23 team gave us so much to cheer for and to be proud of. But this team gave Tim and Elayne Martin so much more.

“He has cancer and it is not good, it is in his lungs,” said Elayne Martin. “And I just wanted him to come here. We paid a lot of money and here we are.”

Tim and Elayne Martin live in Gardendale, but lived in Tuscaloosa County for years before that. Tim’s had Alabama men’s basketball season tickets for more than three decades, so he’s seen some good Alabama teams. But this team, he said, is special.

“They are loaded with talent and I think they all genuinely play together,” Tim Martin said. “They love each other, they get along. And I think that is the reason why they have been doing so well.”

For the Martins, following this Alabama team has become more than just past time.

“I can get up and go to the games and have something to look forward to,” Tim Martin said. “And always have something to keep me looking forward to.”

Since Tim’s condition worsened, Elayne said they’ve been making all the special memories they can.

“Oh, it is just unbelievable, ya know. Yesterday for the first time, he has always loved Corvettes, so we stopped at the Corvette Museum, which was amazing. It was awesome. Fun times and spending time together,” said Elayne.

When WVUA 23 met Tim and Elayne, they were watching Friday’s live episode of “The Next Round” being broadcast from Patrick Oshea’s restaurant in Louisville. The guest on that show was the voice of Alabama men’s basketball Chris Stewart, who has publicly fought his own health battles in recent years.

Stewart said he feels like God put Tim and Elayne in his path.

“We did swap numbers,” Stewart said. “The reason I told him I wanted to swap is that when you go through something like, he is encountering people with great intentions will say ‘Oh, I know how you are feeling.’ And unless you have been there, you don’t. And as I have been able to tell, one of many reasons God has blessed me and allowed me to come through that is to so I can look  someone like Tim in the eye and say, ‘I understand.’ I do understand. And to be able to share the good and the bad when your in that position can be somewhat therapeutic, and I hope to be that for him.”

Categories: Alabama, College Sports, Local News