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Roswell pic

The 25th annual Ride for Roswell was to have taken place this weekend. I am registered to Ride to End Cancer, but like tens of thousands of fellow riders, I will instead be following pandemic protocol and avoiding crowds. Both The Ride and being extremely cautious to avoid exposure to Covid are particularly critical for me this year. Because of cancer.

For more than a decade I could not do the Ride for Roswell. Not because I was physically unable, but because I was otherwise engaged the third weekend in June—every year—orchestrating Buffalo Old Home Week/Citybration. I rolled The Ride into that four-day extravaganza, suggesting that “a great way to see Buffalo is while pedaling a bicycle on The Ride for Roswell.”

Then, in 2013, I became a patient at Roswell. Fortunately, that tumor was benign, but it was growing and threatening what was left of the hearing in my left ear. Gamma knife surgery precisely radiated every millimeter of that pesky invader sitting right on my acoustic nerve. Thanks to the expert care that I received at Roswell I was able to hear my fellow riders when I finally was able to Ride for Roswell. The 30-mile Canada route has been my favorite, always riding with my good friend Monica Neuwirt, who has ridden in every single Ride since its inception!

That was the plan this year, as well. Until March. That was when the Ride as we know it was cancelled due to the pandemic and when I was given yet another very personal reason to support the Ride for Roswell. I once again became a patient at Roswell. And this time the tumors were not benign.

While we were all self-isolating in April and May, I left the house just once a week, each Thursday, to go to Roswell for immunotherapy treatment for bladder cancer. Tests this week indicate that it’s working!

Although it is unlikely that I could have actually ridden 30 miles this weekend to support Roswell, I will ride (in shorter increments) all summer and during the August Physically Distant Rides to support cancer research and the excellent patient services at this valuable organization.

The Ride remains a critical fundraiser for Roswell. Please support those who are signed up to ride by pledging even as the pandemic prevents the Quarter Century Ride from taking place on Saturday. I am shamelessly including this link to my Ride fundraising page—but any of the thousands of riders would appreciate your contribution. As will Roswell and its many patients like me.

Funds raised by The Ride go directly to the cutting-edge cancer research and quality-of-life programs at Roswell and will bring us closer to a world without cancer. No donation is too small. In fact, Roswell says it is able to turn every dollar donated into an additional $13 in new grant funding. Wow. Here’s more information on how the funds are spent.

Please consider joining me in making a difference. Let’s end cancer.

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