Neil Cavuto — Fox News Senior VP, managing editor, and host of multiple acclaimed news shows — is a force to be reckoned with in the media. The journalist tirelessly hosts Fox News Channel’s Your World as well as CavutoMonday through Friday, while also providing insight into the world of finances with Cavuto on Business on Saturday mornings. He does so with a smile and seemingly tirelessly, while also battling multiple sclerosis. An equally — if not even more so — tireless advocate of awareness and research, the Fox News anchor has been consistently vocal about his diagnosis. Theseseven Neil Cavuto quotes about his illness are just a handful of many that point to a seriously inspiring figure.
Cavuto has been an invaluable resource to his colleagues as well. When fellow Fox News journalist Janice Dean received her MS diagnosis a decade ago, Cavuto was one of the first people she talked with. Dean describes him as being incredibly supportive as well as highlighting the many ways that the network would in turn support them, “even if that support included building wheelchair ramps,” she writes in an op-ed for FoxNews.com. Cavuto’s support is what has inspired Dean to also reach out to others suffering from the disease as a means of support and solidarity.
Seizing The Moment
Having MS has made Cavuto really hone in on his priorities, especially when it comes to his job as a prominent Fox Business journalist. In an interview with Fast Company, the esteemed anchor laid out exactly how he feels working in such a demanding field with a degenerative disease:
I don’t know if many people know this about me, but I have multiple sclerosis. So I don’t have time for a lot of shades of gray. I don’t have time for BS. I don’t want to play nonsense games. Ever since I was diagnosed, I’ve had zero patience for the rudeness and vagaries of life. I’ve also got a short leash when it comes to jargon.
Cavuto has taken a zen approach to his condition as well as how to help others who may be struggling. Ultimately, he’s realistic about MS, along with the many other circumstances in our lives that we can’t control. Cavuto touched upon this in an interview on Good Morning America for MS awareness month:
It’s not always easy but it is what it is and like things come our way that we can’t control… A disease like this doesn’t recognize either your politics or your wealth or your status, it affects everybody.
Adjusting To Life With MS
Despite having moments on-air in which he can barely see or has mobility issues, Cavuto soldiers on to host three acclaimed shows on Fox News Channel as well as Fox Business. During his GMA interview, he discussed in detail with George Stephanopoulos the ways he makes do despite the pain and in the face of bad days:
The biggest adjustment I had when I was diagnosed was understanding a limb that would go out and compensate with another limb… It gets bizarre but you read your body after a while and you realize that, hey, we can do this.
Cavuto is a strong advocate for MS awareness and has championed other MS sufferers as well. Still, the journalist recognizes that pain is very real in this world and affects so many, no matter their status. In a segment defending Ann Romney, who also suffers from the disease, Cavuto had this to say about how suffering is treated across the board:
I’ve known much poorer folks who’d stop everything for a hangnail. That doesn’t make them bad. But assuming there are somehow classes to pain? Well, that’s very bad. That’s very sick. And that is very wrong. Courage is not defined by the cash in your wallet; I suspect, more, the strength in your heart.
Leading By Example
MS symptoms can worsen at any time and Cavuto understands the vulnerable position he’s in as an on-air personality expected to deliver a flawless newscast night in and night out — a tall order for even the most healthy and experienced journalist. In an interview with Vanity Fair, the Fox News Channel Senior VP discusses how those moments act as a means to teach others that it is possible to live and even thrive while still suffering from MS:
I had to show people that in my down or shaky moments — my son calls them my ‘wiggly leg’ moments — they know it and see it, but I try to show them, whether I’m on air all night for midterm election coverage or conventions, that I can deal with this.
Loving What You Do
Much of what Cavuto credits as the reason he’s been so resilient and relentless in his work is the fact that he simply loves what he does. No matter how draining or demanding the task may be, the journalist sees his job as a healthy and ultimately fulfilling distraction:
The adrenaline of covering this stuff more than makes up for the onslaught of the bad medical stuff… But I’d be lying to you if I told you that after five or six hours on the air, anchoring non-stop election or market coverage — as has been the case on more than a few occasions — I tend to just crumble into a heap when it’s all over.
Cavuto’s diagnosis has brought about a gratefulness and humbleness that is incredibly inspiring. He believes that even receiving his diagnosis in the 1990s was a potentially good thing, as opposed to beginning treatment earlier and prior to more medical advancements in the field of MS research, something he touched upon in an interview with Neurology Now:
Having MS has made me look at life and death more sharply. I don’t take my success for granted, and I value the time I spend with my wife and children.