Collegiate angler fights for a cure with the help of friends and strangers alike

A local athlete fighting a rare disease is touching the hearts of many. A post he made on social media, prompted friends to start a campaign in his honor.

In less two weeks, nearly $9,000 has been raised for David Cosner. It was all made possible by family, friends and dozens of people around austin he has never met. 25-year-old David Cosner says fishing is his best medicine.
"Here's some pictures from the national championship, the bait that got us there," says David Cosner, Texas State student.

At 17 he was diagnosed with Wegener's Granulomatosis, a rare disease that causes the inflammation of blood vessels and can damage major organs of the body. In David's case, it's his lungs that have taken a hit.

"The end of the tunnel is a lung transplant. You know, I've had so much lung work up to this point. There comes a point where those organs say, I can't do this anymore," says Cosner.

Two-thirds of his right lung has already been removed. Recently, David found out a transplant would be needed sooner than expected, within the next two years.

"Looking back on it, it's all kind of a big blur. It all happened so quickly. I mean, I've been in a coma twice, gone through five rounds of chemo, had to learn to walk after each coma," says Cosner.

On top of that, he's undergone 217 surgeries and has had multiple close calls.So two weeks ago he made a post on social media about his nine year fight.
His relentless strength quickly caught the attention of many.

"The support has been awesome. You know, all my high school classmates and college classmates always texting me and emailing me. There's been a lot of donations from people I don't even know. That alone, is a pretty special thing," says Cosner.   

 David is currently part of a medical study at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio. The hope is to learn more about Wegener's disease, to be able to help others.

"They really don't know where it comes from, so that's why they don't have a cure," says Cosner.

David isn't letting that slow him down. He attends Texas State University and has made his name known around campus. He started the bass fishing team there in 2009. The following year, they placed second in the Fishing League Worldwide College National Championship.

"Obviously people are going to worry. I'm going to worry but it's just showing strength through adversity. That really makes the difference," says Cosner.