By Ethan Zohn
The world of professional soccer certainly has its share of stars — players who’ve elevated themselves to hero status with an incredible save or game-winning goal. But as anyone who’s ever played soccer will tell you, this beautiful game truly is a team sport.
In fact, the lessons I learned as a player and coach on the soccer field proved invaluable both as a competitor in “Survivor: Africa” and in my later struggle with cancer. Yet while a reality show competition and a battle with Hodgkin’s lymphoma may not seem to have much in common at first glance, I was able to survive both due to an invaluable assist from nature.
According to an ever growing body of research, however, the last remnants of the world’s natural areas are quickly disappearing. And I’m now speaking out in an effort to get others to join me in the effort to save these last wild areas.
It all started on Survivor: Africa. I’m alive today due to a drug derived from the rosy periwinkle, a rare African flower found on the island of Madagascar. Yet in 2002, while competing in “Survivor: Africa,” this delicate pink flower was the farthest thing from my mind.