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Alan Faneca Discusses His Battle With Epilepsy, Relationship With Big Ben, Hall Of Fame

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Alan Faneca is just days away from being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. A first-round pick and nine-time All-Pro, Faneca made playing guard in at the highest level look easy. But few knew the challenges, including epilepsy, he faced en route to Canton.

“A lot of people don’t know that I actually have epilepsy and I’ve had it since I was 15,” said Faneca.

Both Faneca and his daughter suffer from the disease: “A lot of people don’t know that I actually have epilepsy and I’ve had it since I was 15 years old, so it’s near and dear to me. My daughter has a rare case of epilepsy as well,” Faneca told Rosvoglou of The Spun.”….The thing that’s best is to never accept life the way it is. Things can get better. It’s not always easy, but you can always fight your way to a better place in life. I saw a quote that says “Everything you want is on the other side of hard.” I love that quote, man,” he added.

Faneca never let epilepsy slow him down. His 13-year NFL career included eight All-Pro awards and the chance to play with a future Hall of Famer at quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger. As someone who spent years protecting Big Ben, Faneca’s still protective of the Pittsburgh QB: “I think the easy take is to say that he’s washed up. The Ben I know is going to work hard and lead that team. A lot of (the Steelers’) problems from last season will be fixed,” Faneca added. I think they have a bit more in the tank this year and there are some bright possibilities for the Steelers.”

After overcoming epilepsy, achieving personal on-field success, blocking for soon-to-be Hall of Famers and winning a Super Bowl, Faneca will be enshrined in Canton on Saturday: “I’m just so pumped to go and enjoy the moment. I was at a loss for words when they knocked on my door,” Faneca said via The Spun.

Being inducted along with Faneca, who spent nine of his 13 NFL seasons in Pittsburgh, are fellow Steelers Troy Polamalu and (coach) Bill Cowher.

Written by Anthony Farris

Anthony is a former high school basketball intramural champion who played a leading role in creating two offspring. He spends his weekends hoping for an MTV Rock N' Jock revival.

Follow him on twitter @OhioAF

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