It is true: All glory is fleeting. This lesson was learned by Lance Armstrong, who has seen his image implode from courageous cancer survivor and world-class athlete to just another competitor who cheated to win at all costs. Armstrong has announced he will not challenge findings by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency that he used performance-enhancing drugs on the way to winning seven Tour de France titles, an Olympic bronze medal and other races. Armstrong will now be stripped of his ill-gotten trophies and winnings. And despite his protestations to the contrary, the cyclist's decision not to defend himself is a tacit admission that he scammed the sport of cycling and the public.
As Armstrong claimed his victories, he promoted an inspirational story of surviving cancer to return to the international sporting stage. But too many witnesses have turned up to provide eyewitness accounts of Armstrong using banned substances to help get to the winner's circle. Finally the disgraced athlete conceded he no longer had the will to fight the case against him.
Now the work of Armstrong's charitable foundation has been put at risk. And a role model to millions of cancer victims and children has been exposed as a fraud. Was the pursuit of fame worth the cost to a reputation?