This week saw fans of ‘The Game’ rejoice when Kelly Pitts (played by Brittany Daniel) strutted back on to the hit BET show.
After all, when the Daniel disappeared from the show abruptly in the break between season 4 and 5, many were shocked at the suddenness of her departure – yet more surprised by the lack of explanation.
And while many sources cited the dreaded “contract disputes” as the cause, Daniel has revealed to PEOPLE this week that it was indeed Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma cancer than kept her off of the screen for three years.
Peep excerpts from the report below.
“It happened so suddenly,” she tells PEOPLE exclusively. Almost immediately after her diagnosis, Daniel – who starred opposite her twin sister, Cynthia, on the 1994 teen drama Sweet Valley High – started chemotherapy. During her recovery, she and her mom moved into Cynthia’s guest house. The rallying of her inner circle, and the work of her physician Dr. Julie Dunhill, gave Daniel hope and the continued strength to soldier forward.
“There is is no way I would have ever gotten through this without my family. My family is everything to me and I feel like they saw me through this.”
Though she originally wanted to keep her situation a private matter (she only told a small group of family and friends), Daniel – now healthy and cancer-free – realized her story could help others going through a similar situation.
“I want to let people know it is absolutely possible to get through something like this,” she says. “I want people to know they are not alone.”
As for the future, she’s thrilled to be back on The Game (BET, Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT) and possibly starting a family of her own.
Adds Daniel: “I am just trying to enjoy every day.”
We’re glad to hear she’s back, happy, and healthy. It goes to show, gossip without substantiation is rarely ever right.