From guest contributor Kerri Kazarba Schneider
?Everyone who gets involved in Obliteride is so glad they participated. You get to meet a lot of amazing people and will never forget the great experience.?
??????????? -Nancy Evans ? Magnolia resident
Nancy Evans is one of the spunkiest people you will ever meet. She may be 75 years old but she doesn?t let her age, or cancer for that matter, slow her down. Nancy?s motto is ?use it or lose it,? and she lives it every day. She bikes, swims and has an incredibly positive outlook on life.
You would never know Nancy is living with cancer. The Magnolia woman was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin?s lymphoma in 2011. ?There is no cure for my kind of blood cancer,? said Nancy. All she can do is watch and wait. If the cancer gets worse, doctors will do what they can to treat her. Still, Nancy?s positive attitude prevails. ?I consider my diagnosis a gift of valuing every new day.?
This summer Nancy and her daughter plan to ride 150 miles from Seattle to Tacoma and back. This will be her 4th year participating in Obliteride, a bike ride to raise money for cancer research at Fred Hutch. ?It?s an amazing experience each time,? said Nancy. ?It?s very special to me meeting so many other riders who are cancer survivors.? Nancy is thrilled her 12-year-old grandson plans to ride the 10-mile route this year.
Obliteride has raised nearly $7 million for life-saving cancer research in just three years. Every dollar riders fundraise goes directly to Fred Hutch.
?These funds are vital to our work toward cancer cures,? said Dr. Gary Gilliland, president and director of Fred Hutch. ?There?s a very real urgency now as we are on the verge of breakthroughs. For example, our scientists have seen extraordinary success using a patient?s own immune cells to make cancer literally vanish, even in patients with the most advanced stages of disease. It?s unprecedented. Fundraising efforts like Obliteride help us cure cancer faster.?
The need for cures is urgent and the facts are scary. One out of three women and half of all men will be diagnosed with cancer. This year, nearly 70,000 people are expected to be diagnosed with cancer in the Northwest alone.
Join Obliteride ? the movement to cure cancer faster
Obliteride has routes for everyone from rookies to road warriors. Riders are treated to a first-class event including fun parties, live entertainment and fantastic food from Tom Douglas Catering. ?The whole weekend is a big celebration,? said Nancy. ?It is the most organized bike ride I participate in and it is the most fun!?
To be part of this exciting event on Aug. 14, sign up to ride 10-165 miles or volunteer at obliteride.org.
If you would like to donate to Nancy?s ride, go to her personal fundraising page.