- Virtual 3-Day Rider
- 4th Trek
This year I am riding the 270 miles from my state and I have until June 21st to complete my miles!
My connection to ALS started six years ago when my daughter, Brittany, was asked to be a Ride Marshal for the Tri State Trek, which is a three-day 270 mile bike ride from Newton MA to Greenwich CT. At that time, we knew little about ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease). My daughter’s role was to be the sweep and stay with the slowest group of riders, help them if needed, and encourage them during the ride. Brittany spent most of her time as sweep riding with an enthusiastic team called What About Bobby? who rallied around Bobby Forster, an amazing young man living with ALS. Bobby’s team and the whole Trek community welcomed my daughter as family. Two years later, Brittany encouraged me to join the community as a route support volunteer. I would drive the route that the cyclists travel and stop anytime they needed help, whether it was for water, a snack, pumping air in their tires, a lift to the next rest stop, jumping out of the van to direct traffic near upcoming hidden turns, and, my favorite part, ringing the cowbells to give them inspiration to continue riding. Once my van passed the lead rider, I would circle back to the end of the pack of riders and start all over again. I was paired with another volunteer (a researcher working to end ALS) who cheered out the window (and sunroof!) the entire time – it was amazing to spend the weekend with both families impacted by ALS and the scientists dedicated to finding a cure. The following year my husband, Jeff, joined me on the route support crew. We have crewed together the past two years.
Well this year with Covid19, the Tri State Trek organizers realized they could not host the event this June, in order to protect the health and well-being of everyone involved. So they decided to transform the 270 mile ride into a virtual event that anyone can participate in from any state while practicing social distancing! It's now called My State Trek!
Since my route support role won't be needed this year, they are asking crew members to take on the challenge of riding to raise funds. We will have from now until June 21st to complete our 270 miles. Well, they didn't have to ask me twice -- I immediately said, “Yes, I'm in for the full 270 miles!” I am not a rider like my daughter, so I know this will be hard, but I am determined to meet my goal. Over the past three years I have met so many incredible families who are caring for loved ones with ALS or have lost someone to this heart-wrenching disease but still return to fight for a cure for others.
ALS is a progressive, neurodegenerative disease that causes muscle weakness, difficulty breathing and swallowing, and paralysis while leaving the senses intact. ALS TDI (Therapy Development Institute) is the world's first and largest nonprofit biotech focused 100 percent of ALS research. They understand the urgent need to slow and stop this horrible disease.
I realize these are tough times for everyone, but I'm asking for help in reaching my goal of donations if you can. No amount is too small--I cannot express how passionate I am about helping to fund the research to one day have a cure of this terrible disease. Let’s end ALS together!!!
Thank you all for your support and help!
UPDATE !! 1000 miles completed!!
After getting out on my bike each and every day since April6, I have ridden over a thousand miles. Thats over three times the distance of the 270-mile Tri State Trek!
On Saturday, June 20th, ALS TDI is hosting a special Town Hall where people living with ALS and thier loved ones will have a chance to share their stories over Zoom. This is the weekend when we would have had the Trek in person. Normally on Saturday nights we would all be together at the UConn campus gathered around a stage as we listened, reflected, and cried.
I'm $383 away from my fundraising goal. Can we hit my goal before the 6 pm event on Saturday, June 20th?
Thank you so much to e eryone who has already contributed. Lets END ALS together!!
2nd UPDATE!!: I hit my goal!! THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH FOR THE SUPPORT! Your donations will help ALS TDI as they research therapies to support those living with ALS and work to finda cure! I'm thrilled to hit my goal but my page will remain open if anyone else would like to contribute to ALS TDI's research. "ALS is not an incurable disease, it's an underfunded one!" THANK YOU ALL !!