Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Help me celebrate cancer survivorship and raise money for cancer

Last year, I signed up to participate in a bike relay to raise awareness and funds to fight cancer. The event is called 24 Hours of Booty (http:/www.24hoursofbooty.org). It started in Charlotte, NC when a cyclist decided to ride for 24 hours straight on a local bike route call the “Booty Loop” and the 24 Hours of Booty event was created. The following year the event became public and over 100 riders joined in and raised over $33,000. In 2008 after great success in North Carolina this event spread to Columbia, MD.

In the late summer of 2008 I had recovered somewhat from my previous treatment for metastatic Ovarian Cancer. I was not sure how much I would be able to ride, but I was looking forward to the first lap – the survivor lap. I wanted to celebrate my improved health and being lay claim to the title cancer survivor. I was overwhelmed by the support from my family and friends and raised $750.

One week before the event, I learned that the tumors in my lungs had grown and several more have popped up. I was devastated, but was still looking forward to participating in 24 hours of Booty. Unfortunately, the inaugural Columbia event in 2008 was cancelled due to hurricane Hannah. I was saddened that the event was cancelled and even more so very disappointed that I would not be able to ride the 2.5 mile loop celebrating myself as a cancer survivor.

Throughout this past year my cancer has continued to spread and my health has deteriorated and am now in the end stage of terminal cancer. As the Columbia 24 Hours of Booty Columbia approached (September 26 -27), I knew I would not be able to participate this year. Just one more thing the cancer had taken from me.

A new friend realized how much the survivors’ lap meant to me and contacted a local bike shop (http://chesapeakecyclesport.com/)and arranged for them to donate a pedal powered rickshaw. Owen will be pedaling me during the first lap and despite my health has made it possible for me to participate in the event and the survivors’ lap.

I am trying to help Owen with his fundraising. All funds that are raised go to Johns Hopkins Hospital, The Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults, and The Lance Armstrong Foundation. Will you help us raise money to help individuals affected by cancer? http://www.24hoursofbooty.org/site/TR/Bike/General?px=1192421&pg=personal&fr_id=1070

Additionally, I am hoping to raise additional funds and get other riders to commit to pedaling the rickshaw for a lap or two for a nominal donation. Wanna Help? Feel free to contact me at sonsalli@comcast.net or look for us this Saturday and Sunday.

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