Nicole Hazen, the 45-year-old wife of Arizona Diamondbacks general manager Mike Hazen, died on Thursday.
She was a mother to four boys, who had been battling severe brain cancer for over two years, died as a result of disease-related complications.
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The Diamondbacks, based in Phoenix, Arizona, released a message from the Hazens on Twitter shortly after her death.
“Nicole lived her life and loved her family with fierceness and devotion,” the message stated. “She spent every day in the service of others as a mother, wife and educator advocating for goodness. From our family, we remain forever grateful for the love, support and random acts of kindness bestowed upon us for the last two years and four months. We would not have been able to walk down this road, with her, without the help and generosity of our community.”
In 2020, Hazen was diagnosed with glioblastoma, a rapidly growing and terminal brain tumour.
“It’s a malignant brain cancer. That means it comes from a cell in the brain and it never really leaves the brain,” vice chair of neurosurgery and director of the Brain Tumor Center at Lenox Hill Hospital, Dr. John Boockvar stated previously in an interview. “It stays in the brain, but it spreads throughout the brain, and that’s what makes it universally lethal. So it’s an incurable brain cancer.”
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In their statement, Hazen’s family explained, “Glioblastoma slowly took her capacity to speak, walk, talk and lead but never took her capacity to love her children, family and friends. We are lost without her but will carry the torch of her unyielding empathy for everyone forward, from this day onward.”
Following her diagnosis, she formed the Nicole Hazen Fund For Hope, with the stated objective of providing “more patients with aggressive brain tumors access to rapid, state-of-the-art treatment as well as compassionate support throughout the entire journey.” In her memory, the nonprofit will continue.
The Diamondbacks’ owner, Ken Kendrick, and president, Derrick Hall, both issued statements on Thursday.
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“Nicole was a beloved member of the D-Backs’ family, and we are saddened by her passing,” the statement read. “Our thoughts and prayers are with Mike, (their sons) Charlie, John, Teddy, Sam and their entire extended family. Nicole will be remembered for her vibrance, kindness, and a beautiful smile that could light up a room. Her fighting spirit was evident in every step of her courageous journey and in her efforts to make an impact on research and treatment, while providing future hope to those who receive a similar diagnosis. She will forever be remembered and honored.”