Well, I guess, it is official now after the Boston Globe wrote about it on the 21st July, legendary rowing coach Harry Parker, 75, is undergoing treatment at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. Parker took ill in mid-May and has since been diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), which is a form of blood cancer that can lead to leukemia.
I thought he looked a little tired when I briefly talked to and congratulated him to Harvard’s three wins over Yale on 28 May (see HTBS Harvard Takes It All), but he still had the glimpse in his eye when he talked about his Harvard crews.
Parker did not go to Henley, instead associate head coach Bill Manning, who has proved to be a capable coach, was in charge in England. Manning tells the Globe that although Parker is getting treatment at Dana-Faber Cancer Institute doesn’t mean that he is not involved. “It’s very clear that Harry’s in charge,’’ Manning told the Globe. “He’s running the show. My expectation is that he’s going to be coaching on the water essentially every day [when training starts again in September].’’
Already on 11 July, Rowing News reported that Parker was receiving cancer treatment. To read the Globe’s article, click here.