09/10/2011 01:21 EDT | Updated 11/10/2011 05:12 EST

Lance Armstrong inspires Montrealers

Champion cyclist Lance Armstrong has delivered a big helping of hope to hundreds of Montrealers living with cancer.

The seven-time Tour de France winner was the keynote speaker at a Friday night fundraiser for the Cedars Cancer Institute.

Armstrong talked about his battle with testicular cancer, and his subsequent return to professional cycling.

He gave advice on how to support loved ones diagnosed with cancer.

"Ninety-nine per cent of the time they just want to be heard — they want to know that you listened to their story, that you've accepted it into your heart and soul, and that you've turned around and looked them in the eye and said 'hey, I got it.'"

Montrealer Steven MacDonald, an avid cyclist, was diagnosed with Stage-4 stomach cancer this spring.

He said Armstrong's words are inspiring.

"When you meet people that are going through this, or have gone through this, there's an eye connection, and you know."