WKYC-TV sports director, radio voice of the Browns Jim Donovan announces leukemia relapse

Jim Donovan, radio voice of the Cleveland Browns
Jim Donovan, radio voice of the Cleveland Browns Photo credit Cleveland Browns

CLEVELAND, Ohio (92.3 The Fan) – WKYC TV-3 sports director and radio voice of the Cleveland Browns Jim Donovan is once again battling leukemia.

Donovan made the announcement Wednesday evening on WKYC-TV 3’s ‘Front Row’ program.

“It was told to me that I had had a relapse of leukemia,” Donovan said. “The disease had come back. So for the last year and a half, I have been getting treatment for that with various forms of chemotherapy, some with intravenous and others with oral chemo drugs. And for the most part, those worked pretty well. But things change and things have changed for me in my case. And so we're going to have to go with a different treatment plan, more aggressive treatment plan, which has already started.”

Donovan, who revealed he has been receiving intravenous and oral chemotherapy for the last 18 months, underwent a bone marrow transplant nearly 11 ½ years ago and he is prepared to fight the disease once again.

“This is going to be kind of a long and winding road through this treatment plan because it is going to be pretty aggressive,” Donovan said. “But the goal is got to get better, got to get healthy, got to move on. I know the deal. I've done it before and I plan to do it once again.”

Jimmy and Dee Haslam issued a statement on behalf of the Haslam Sports Group and entire Browns organizations shortly after Donovan’s announcement.

“Our thoughts and the thoughts of the entire organization are with Jim and his family right now in this difficult time,” the Haslams said. “There is no better representative of the Cleveland Browns. He is as tough as they come and proved as much in his previous battle. We’re all behind Jim and will do everything we can to support him. We look forward to him winning this fight, being around the team and continuing to call our games during the season.”

Donovan, 66, thanked his wife, daughter as well as colleagues at Channel 3 and the Cleveland Browns for their support.

“We were knocked for a little bit of a loop when we got the news about this, but we've kind of studied ourself and we're ready to go once again, ready for the fight,” Donovan said. “I have total confidence in the medical professionals who are handling my case, the doctors, the nurses, the medical professionals at the Seidman Cancer Center at University Hospitals. They have done an amazing job for many, many years treating me and I am ready to put my case in their hands once again.”

Donovan, who began calling Browns games for the team when it returned to the NFL in 1999, plans to continue with his roles at both WKYC and the Browns radio network as long as his treatment schedule and health will allow him.

“There are going to be periods of time where I might not be with you. That might be for a day, might be for a longer period of time,” Donovan said. “We'll just have to see how the treatment plan goes and see how I react to it all know this, That I have always had you in my thoughts and I adore being with you as we go through the ups and sometimes the downs of Cleveland Sports. So you are in my thoughts and you are a goal for me to be back with you here at Channel three, down at the stadium, calling the bronze up in the radio booth. And I'll be there when I can or as much as I can. But right now, duty calls and the duty is I have to get better. I plan on getting better, and I think that everything right now is pointing in a positive way.”

Featured Image Photo Credit: Cleveland Browns