OK, it is a ride and not a race but I wanted to get your attention.
We did prevail over the long and hilly 84-mile course in extreme weather conditions, temperatures hovering near 60 degrees and torrential rain throughout the last 30 miles.
Joining me were veteran team member Gerry Campos along with highly skilled newcomers, Scott Sewall, Tricia Glynn-Campos and Tamar Davis. Despite the challenges, we were urged along by Elizabeth’s spirit and her ever present enthusiasm for the idea that a reasonable test of one’s character is a good thing.
The people lining the route to cheer us on were an encouragement beyond words. They stood for hours with flimsy umbrellas and dripping, makeshift tents, never wavering in their encouragement. Seeing this unselfish and unheralded collection of soggy cheerleaders was inspirational to say the least.
Gerry slept in one of the Mass Maritime Academy dorms Saturday night and powered on to Provincetown on Sunday, representing Team Elizabeth solo for that day’s ride. When he finished, he texted, “As I rode the last hundred yards with literally hundreds of people on either side cheering and applauding, I realized that there were no other riders near me. As such, I was overcome with the realization that they were focused on me. I held my chest high so they could see Elizabeth’s picture on my jersey and then the tears came and would not stop. I am so proud to be a member of Team Elizabeth and so proud of what we achieved yesterday.”
That about sums it up for all of us who rode, for our growing list of donors (gifts are still coming in and will continue, I hope, until the deadline of October 1), and for the incalculable numbers of well-wishers who have been with us all the way. We, as a team in the broadest sense of the word, are proud of our accomplishment and grateful for the opportunity to feel Elizabeth’s abiding spirit pushing us to help thousands of people challenged by cancer to get better. Quite remarkable, indeed.
For those who’d still like to donate before the October 1st close of fundraising for this year, you can do so online at our Team Elizabeth page or can send a check made out to Pan-Mass Challenge to me at: 57 Wheelwright Farm, Cohasset, MA 02025. As always, your contribution is tax-deductible and every single dollar goes to Elizabeth’s endowment at Dana-Farber.