From the “This Is Really Awesome” files comes this story regarding Kim Hughes, former Los Angeles Clippers head coach, and his fight with prostate cancer. Read the Journal Times’ whole article because it’ll really make you happy, but here’s the quick background information: Seven years ago,Hughes was diagnosed with prostate cancer, told he needed surgery that could wait, went for a second opinion and was told that the cancer was growing faster than originally thought.

Now you’re caught up and now’s when it gets good, right after it gets bad again. Gary Woelfel explains:

“I contacted the Clippers about medical coverage and they said the surgery wouldn’t be covered,” Hughes said. “I said, ‘Are you kidding me?’ And they said if they did it for one person, they’d have to do for everybody else.”

When Dunleavy learned the Clippers wouldn’t cover the cost of Hughes’ surgery, he mentioned it to his players.

Several of them, including now Milwaukee Bucks forward Corey Maggette, Chris Kaman, Elton Brand and Marko Jaric, were taken aback by the news and decided to offer their assistance.

“Kim was one of our coaches and he’s a really good friend of mine, too,” Maggette said. “He was in a situation where the Clippers’ medical coverage wouldn’t cover his surgery. I thought it was a great opportunity to help someone in need, to do something that Christ would do.

“It shows your humanity, that you care for other people and not just yourself. Kim was in a life-and-death situation.”

Leaving out the fact that the Clippers refused to cover Hughes’ surgery — a very Clippers thing to do, even though it’s not terribly uncommon because medical insurance in the United States is painfully stupid — isn’t that great? Isn’t it impossible to dislike Corey Maggette, Chris Kaman, Elton Brand and Marko Jaric now that you know they helped pay for a coach’s medical bills? Puts smile on your face and smiling is the best.

Even better, seven years later, Hughes is cancer-free and still thanks these guys every time he sees them. Naturally, they say it’s not necessary, that they were just helping a friend. For his part, Maggette says, “It was just my time to serve another human being.” So great.

(via Howard Beck)