Black Eyed Peas Star Taboo Opened Up About Privately Battling Testicular Cancer

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It’s been a few years since we’ve heard from Black Eyed Peas star Taboo, and for good reason: he was privately battling stage two testicular cancer.

Taboo, who was born Jaime Luis Gomez, recently opened up to People about his experience with the devastating disease. “It all started with a pain in my back and abdomen,” he remembered. “I was so busy working that I wasn’t worried about it, but I went to the emergency room to get checked out.”

After a series of tests, doctors diagnosed Taboo with stage two testicular cancer and just a day later began treatment. “The very next day I went into surgery to have the ‘mother ship’ removed. But my fight had just begun,” he said. “My family and the group were all in shock, but will.i.am instantly reached out to a great doctor who helped me figure out a treatment plan. I was racing against the clock.”

“There were times that I wanted to give up, but I became inspired by sports figures who have gone through similar battles,” he said of his twelve weeks of chemotherapy. “I began channeling my energy into the thing that keeps me alive and spirited: music.”

As for why he decided to keep his diagnosis a secret? Taboo said he wanted to wait until he “made it out the other side stronger.”

It’s been two years since Taboo officially went into remission, and he recently released a song titled “Fight” as a part of his partnership with the American Cancer Society for their campaign called The Fight. “There are millions going through things like this, and I want to remind them that we don’t curl up into a ball when we have a trial or tribulation. We get up and fight.”