Approximately 14 months ago, Travis Roberts was diagnosed with cancer. That’s never a good word to hear, but in his case it was as bad as it can be: Bile duct cancer. As of now, that form of cancer is considered incurable.
Travis wasn’t a political person, but we became aware of him because he is the brother-in-law of Joe Petitt. Joe is the Chairman of the Cobb Young Republicans and a member of the Cobb Board of Elections. He’s also a hell of a great guy. And Travis has always been a close friend, mentor, and role model for Joe.
When the initial course of treatment failed, Joe decided to do…something. ESPN’s Gameday was coming to Athens that week, and Joe decided to use social media to help get Travis a day he would love, and everyone around him would remember. We picked up Travis’ story here. Within days, the effort became a success. Travis was given a true VIP experience by the ESPN team. A lot of you helped in making that happen.
Travis’ battle had its ups and downs, but he never failed to inspire those around him. In April, on his 39th birthday and one year anniversary of his diagnosis, his family friend Kristina Gansser that chronicled his journey via the ConcreteFaith.org had this to say of their past year:
Since that day, that fateful day, we have watched you in admiration. We have watched you grow, help others, love, learn, forgive, chase after Jesus…
We have watched you…change.
You have not walked this road perfectly but there is no expectation for perfection. Only growth. And we have seen plenty of that.
We have seen you grow in ways that have caused us to whisper behind your back, “did he just say that?” “did he just do that?” “was that Travis?!?”
You have shocked us. Inspired us. Taught us. And, of course, made us laugh…even in the most inappropriate of moments as only you can do.
Watching you over the past year has been a humbling experience. It has inspired many of us to live. You have shown us how to love. And for many of us…because of you…we have found our way back to church. Back to God.
A friend, one of us, once said you were a “modern day Paul”. As you sit at Buckhead Church on Sunday morning, taking up two rows with your “army”, that comment comes to life. Leading others to Christ even as you wrestle with Him yourself.
And so, after a year of giving us so much, more than we could have ever asked, we have one more request.
Travis kept fighting until 7 this morning. There is no more fight, only peace.
The fight against cancer will continue, but it is no longer Travis’ battle to fight. It is ours.
Please continue to offer prayers of comfort and strength to the Roberts family and friends, and especially to our friend Joe. It’s been an incredible 14 months.
Travis is now at peace. May his family and friends receive the benefit of the prayers for comfort and their peace that are coming their way so that they, too, may find strength and their peace.