Curt Schilling revealed Wednesday that mouth cancer was the reason he started undergoing medical treatment back in February.
The three-time World Series champion also said that there is no question in his mind that chewing tobacco was the reason he got the disease also known as squamous cell carcinoma.
“I do believe without a doubt, unquestionably, that chewing is what gave me cancer,” Schilling said during the WEEI/NESN Jimmy Fund radio telethon. “And I’m not going to sit up here from the pedestal and preach about chewing. I will say this: I did for about 30 years. It was an addictive habit.”
He added: “The pain that I was in going through this treatment, the second or third day, it was the only thing in my life that had that I wish I could go back and never have dipped. Not once. It was so painful.”
Schilling went public with the news he had cancer back in February and announced in June that he is in remission. But until now he has declined to give specifics on the type of cancer he was battling.
“I didn’t talk about it for two reasons,” Schilling said. “No. 1, I didn’t want to get into the chewing tobacco debate, which I knew was going to come about, which to me, I’ll go to my grave believing that was why I got what I got … absolutely, no question in my mind about that.
“And the second thing was I didn’t want people to feel sorry for me. I didn’t want the pity or any of that stuff.”