“We’re in a pre-9/11 moment,” warned Mike Wallace, a member of the National Infrastructure Advisory Council (NIAC), at the White House on August 22.
The Pan-Mass Challenge (PMC) is a bike-a-thon that today raises more money for charity than any other single athletic fundraising event in the country.
Benefiting the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, the PMC pioneered the $4 billion athletic fundraising industry when it was founded in 1980.
The PMC donates 100 percent of every rider-raised dollar directly to Dana-Farber and is the institute’s largest single contributor. The PMC has raised more than a half-billion dollars for adult and pediatric cancer care and research at Dana-Farber since 1980. In 2016, the PMC gave a record gift of $47 million. The goal this year is $48 million. This will bring the PMC’s 38-year contribution to Dana-Farber to more than $595 million.
The PMC consists of more than 6,200 cyclists from ages 15 to 84 most will ride the two-day event of either 132 or 192 miles on Aug 5-6. I have always ridden the 192-mile version but this year I will start in Wellesley for the 132-mile edition. Each rider must raise a minimum of $4500.
This will be my 15th year riding in this event.
Many think of me as a “poster child” for this event because I was struck with cancer as a 16-year old. It was a a rare bone cancer called osteosarcoma which caused me to lose my right leg. This cancer affects only about 1000 people a year in the US and only kids in their teens. Three years after the amputation that same cancer spread (metastasized) to my left lung which also was removed. Based on historical data, I had zero chance of survival. But Dana-Farber just had the chemotherapy they developed for osteosarcoma released for clinical use and I was put on it. Forty-four years later I am still kicking, and riding, and skiing, and open water swimming. This year I raised over $8000 for my ride (donate link is here). I ride this year in honor of Stacy Kirkpatrick who for the past 7 years was my wing woman while we rode every mile of the PMC together. She died way too early and way too suddenly from aggressive ovarian cancer last year.
Watch my CBS Boston Why I PMC segment here.
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