Belfast’s Pete Lovejoy continuing as honorary Lions coach while battling Stage 4 liver cancer

Lovejoy was diagnosed four days after placing 2nd at the KVAC Wrestling Championships in February
Published: Sep. 29, 2022 at 1:05 PM EDT
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BELFAST, Maine (WABI) - Belfast fans are used to seeing Pete Lovejoy excel on the football field or placing at conference wrestling championships, but a February medical diagnosis has him on the sidelines leading the Lions in a new role.

Lovejoy was diagnosed four days after placing 2nd at the KVAC Wrestling Championships in...
Lovejoy was diagnosed four days after placing 2nd at the KVAC Wrestling Championships in February.(WABI/Jeff Lovejoy)

Stage 4 liver cancer isn’t stopping him from being around the game.

“Football is his No. 1 passion in life. It’s his favorite thing to do,” said Curtis Littlefield, junior defensive tackle/offensive guard.

“Knowing that he wishes he could be out there and the mental and physical battle he’s going through, and him still being able to support us means the world to us,” said Andrew Fairbrother, junior free safety.

The Lions miss him in the lineup, but he’s still making an impact.

“Pete’s a great athlete. It really is a huge loss to our team on the field, but on the sidelines, he’s been a great addition to just encourage, pump people up, and give them some coaching tips. He would have started both ways and would have probably been in contention for All-Conference both ways,” said Art Fairbrother, head coach.

Lions players and fans can’t wait for him to put on the pads again.

“It would be very inspirational, especially to new players. Knowing that he’s gone through all that he has and he’s still (could be) back on the field playing every day, it would definitely help out this community,” said Littlefield.

He’s hoping to return for his senior season.

Lovejoy was diagnosed four days after placing 2nd at the KVAC Wrestling Championships in February.

His father, Jeff, the Belfast principal, explained that the Lovejoys are hopeful about an eventual return to football and wrestling, but doctors are advising against it at this time.

Pete enjoys donning a Tom Landry look with a suit and hat on the sidelines, something that doesn’t surprise Curtis.

Littlefield called Pete a “classy man.”

Lovejoy is continuing to take A.P. classes and is starting an internship at a local veterinary clinic.