By Nathan Pace
For University of Indianapolis softball coach Melissa Frost, her puppy is a lifesaver.
“I have a puppy that just jumped up on me and literally hit me in the chest, and at that point I felt something that wasn’t quite right,” Frost said. “Thank goodness for my puppy.”
The diagnosis of breast cancer was confirmed in November with surgery performed in December.
“I have zero history of breast cancer in my family so it was quite a shock,” Frost said.
Support has come from all over the country as 43 softball teams from 16 states participated in “Faith. Fight. Frost.” in April. The teams wore jerseys sporting the slogan during their games. For Frost, the support has been incredible during her chemotherapy treatments.
“I have treatment once every three weeks,” she said. “It has been different; at the same time it has been awesome to have support of my UIndy family, support of the team and just with the whole Faith. Fight. Frost. campaign that my assistant coach (Sara Kubuske) and Bellarmine University coach (Renee Hicks) kinda put together. It has been incredible how the softball world has rallied around.”
Frost will tell you she doesn’t seek attention, so it was her staff and coaching colleagues that promoted the campaign. “It’s unreal. Just overwhelming gratitude for everyone that participated, and I can’t say how humbling it is that the event and that day was in support of me.”
In her 13 seasons at UIndy, the Greyhounds have worn pink for Sunday games for breast cancer awareness. Frost never though she would be on the receiving end of that support.
“I don’t like a lot of attention, but it has been amazing to walk in the ballpark and see that these people are here to support you,” she said.
Frost admits she has been more hands off this season due to her chemo treatments. She has been able to participate in most games and practices, missing only one road trip.
Her final chemo treatments are to eliminate any remaining cancer cells that may have survived the removal of the tumor. Her last session will be next month.
“It’s a very humbling experience. It’s one of those things where I have zero control over it. It certainly changes your perspective on it. My faith is strong and certainly that is something that has come about through this whole thing.”
Frost attends Mount Pleasant Church in White River Township and has also received encouragement from her Bible study group.
The Greyhounds are in good shape to reach their 10th straight NCAA tournament appearance with a 33-19 record. Frost doesn’t see her time at UIndy ending anytime soon.
“I love Indy; I love UIndy; I love the athletics department.” Frost said. “Dr. Sue Willey (athletic director) is a wonderful person to work for. She cares about you as a coach and an individual.”