Jorien “Sheever” van der Heijden, one of Dota 2's most prominent casters and streaming personalities, revealed earlier today on her Twitch channel that she has cancer and will start undergoing treatment for it later this week.
“Well I have breast cancer,” she told her viewers during her daily Dota 2 stream. “It hasn’t spread. It’ll take a while to recover from it. Starting on chemo on Thursday and yea that will take a while.” She added that she’ll be heading to the hospital with her brother and undergoing Cold Cap treatment to try and prevent the loss of hair that can result from chemo therapy.
In a special message to channel subscribers sent out earlier in the day, Sheever wrote the following,
“Hello, First of all thank you for your support. I have some not so nice news that I wanted to share with you. Two and a half week ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer. Coming Thursday I start with chemo which will last for half a year, followed by surgery and radiotherapy. Everyone reacts differently to chemo, so I don’t know yet what kind of impact it will have on me. I expect I can still stream on some days but the streams will probably be shorter than normal. On the “bright” side I should be able to stream more since I have will not go to (as many) events.
I am heading towards a rough time, but I feel very supported. I have friends, family and Owen taking care of me.”
Fans from across the Dota 2 community immediately began offering their support. In her Twitch chat, user MDimitrovv wrote, “@sheevergaming I believe you will get through it. You are a strong person. Best of Luck,” while on Reddit users discussed how best for the community to rally around her, including the idea to organize a show match whose proceeds would be donated to cancer research efforts. Meanwhile colleagues shared their support over Twitter:
Originally from the Netherlands, Sheever began her casting career with GosuGamers in 2012 before moving on to work independently as an analyst and caster for some of the game’s biggest events, including Starladder, Valve-sponsored Majors, and The Internationals. As a result of her treatment, Sheever said she would miss the Manilla Masters tournament later this month as well as the next few weeks of DreamLeague.
“I think for most of the people who work in Dota 2 that private life kind of isn’t there,” she said in an interview earlier this year. “You have to give up a lot.” In exchange for all of that work, Sheever has become a pillar within the Dota 2 community, a scene where women are severely underrepresented.