Be inspired by G.J. Hart
G.J.Hart, President and CEO of Texas Roadhouse, has agreed to become honorary chair of the second annual Ride to Conquer Cancer benefiting Norton Cancer Institute.
“The Ride to Conquer Cancer is a great event because funds raised locally stay local to help our region fund services and advanced care for cancer patients,” said Hart.
When asked why he had decided to get involved, Hart responded, "It really doesn't matter who you are or where you come from - the fact remains that cancer affects each of our lives. There is no doubt that the Ride represents a bold challenge, but it is achievable and the objective is the best part of the event. I believe that if each person does their part we can conquer this disease.”
Hart also stressed the need for others to take up the challenge and register. “Cancer continues to claim too many lives. Cancer rates in our region are 40 percent higher than the national average, which should motivate everyone to get involved.”
Be inspired by Jackie Schembari, Captain of Team Bryant
Jackie Schembari, captain of Team Bryant lost her 21 year-old daughter to Acute Myelogenous Leukemia eight years ago. Since then she has always participated in cancer fundraisers. However the Ride to Conquer Cancer has driven her to take things to the next level.
After attending an orientation for the 2009 Ride, Schembari was inspired to ride and raise funds with Team Norton Cancer Institute. “I watched some of the dearest people in my life fight cancer,” said Schembari. “I figure if they could fight that, I can get on a bike and raise funds to help the cause.”
For the 2010 Ride this September, Schembari has formed her own team made up of family members and friends who have all been directly affected by cancer. Team member April West lost two of her close co-workers at Norton Facility. The team rides in honor of all the people they hold close, who fought courageous battles with cancer.
As the top fundraising team, Team Bryant has already raised over $18,000 through letter writing and corporate events at the family’s business. “We have gotten an amazing response,” said Schembari. “I think everyone understands that this is a cause close to our hearts.” The team holds monthly meetings to discuss potential fundraising ideas in an effort to engage every member of the team. Schembari even encourages her employees to get involved creatively. Currently, staff can wear jeans to the office for $5 a day to help the team reach their goal.
Future fundraising plans include events with Jackie’s 2009 team from Norton Cancer Institute. A Monte Carlo themed night is in the works, starring a local band who has agreed to donate their time. The team is also organizing a cooking event with The Pampered Chef.
In addition to successful fundraising, Team Bryant dedicates their time to train for the Ride. With a set training schedule outlined, team members ride together to encourage each other. “My husband was always athletic, but we were not cyclists by any means,”said Schembari. “We just grabbed a bike and started training. We had zero experience with an athletic event of this size so we are really adamant about training.” The team has their minds set on a goal and all members have the passion to help find a cure to a disease that has affected their lives so profoundly.
Be Inspired By Julia King
Apprehension is usually where people start with the Ride to Conquer Cancer.
“I don’t think I can raise the cash” or “I don’t think I can Ride that far,” are common refrains.
At first glance, Julia King felt these emotions about the Ride. She is a first grade teacher, not a tycoon. And she was certainly not in a position to traipse across the Pyrenees with Lance Armstrong and other pro riders in the Tour de France, let alone traverse Blue Grass Country. But Julia King overcame.
In fact, this September will mark her second year in The Ride to Conquer Cancer benefiting Norton Cancer Institute.
Simply put, she was blown away by her experience in 2009 and couldn’t pass up the chance to do it again. ”I am so proud to be a part of this and to be given the opportunity to make a difference,” says King. She was touched profoundly when, after completing the 2009 Ride, her students surprised her that Monday with a “Congratulations” banner. Like many of us, she has also seen the ravages of cancer. As such, King is dedicating her effort to a colleague and close friend lost to bladder cancer.
She has assembled a team of 6, named Team Just Cycle, and has personally already raised $2, 300. After receiving $600 in referral credits through the You Deserve the Credit program and $200 in early fundraising incentives, King is well on her way to reaching the minimum fundraising requirement.
“I send a lot of emails and my generous family and friends continue to support me,” says King. “Whatever someone can give continues to make a huge difference, so I simply ask!
The math is simple, little amounts add up to a big amount. And incremental increases in training prepare you for the big day. Anyone can do it!
Team Just Cycle has high hopes of raising a total of $20,000 and look forward to riding together in September.
“I am riding because I can. Helping people fight cancer and give them hope is an easy thing to do. With a little grit and determination, anyone can do it and be successful! I will continue to ride, and encourage everyone else to, until we find a cure.”
Be Inspired By Eric And Sally Osborn
A year after graduating university, 24 year-old Eric Osborn began experiencing painful headaches. When his eyesight began to fade, he decided to visit a doctor. On Tuesday December 2, 2008 Osborn was told he had a tumor in his brain. “Everything happened so fast. I was told on Tuesday, had surgery on Friday and was home to rest on Sunday,” said Osborn. “I didn’t have time to process what was happening.
Osborn’s tumor was classified as an Anaplastic (Malignant) Astrocytoma, and he had chemotherapy and radiation treatment from January to October. During that time, Osborn learnt about the Ride to Conquer Cancer and instantly set his mind on completing it. “I’ve always been athletic, so I wanted to register right away,” said Osborn. His mother, sharing her son’s passion for cycling, decided she would ride alongside him. “Keeping up with my son is challenging, but on a bike I have half a chance,” said Sally Osborn “This is something that we could share and fight for together.”
Less than a year from his diagnosis and during his last few chemotherapy treatments, Osborn completed the Ride. He credits his friends for their dedication in helping him reach his fundraising goal. The mother and son duo have re-registered for 2010 and will be riding as Team Oz this September.
With the weather warming up, the pair has started to train and fundraise for the 2010 Ride. Sally recently set up a donation box at her hair salon. “We want to encourage people to drop 50cents/$1 each time they come in,” said Sally. “If everyone who came into the salon did that we could raise hundreds of dollars for Norton Cancer Institute.”
Osborn describes that much of his drive comes from thinking of all those still battling cancer. “During last year’s Ride I saw a woman sitting on the side of the road who looked as though she may have been fighting her own cancer, yet she still came out to cheer on all the riders,” said Osborn. “I’m riding again for her, and everyone affected by the disease.” Sally shares her son’s inspiration and is grateful to ride by his side. Team Oz embraces the qualities of drive and determination to help conquer cancer!
Cycling for a cure, hoping for some help
By: Kay Harrod
THE STATE JOURNAL
How many times have we seen the signs or read about them in the classifieds - yard sales.
Saturday, there’s another one at 1629 Louisville Road. Put this one on your list so five women can help others with cancer – and accomplish one more of their goals.
Rosie Miklavcic, Michelle Roberts, Julie King, Stephanie Brooker and April Burton are on a mission.
They are preparing to enter the Norton Cancer Institute Ride to Conquer Cancer in September and each must raise $2,500 to participate in the 157 mile bicycle ride over two days.
The group ticked off a few items as they gathered Wednesday night at the Prevention Park Y.
Boyds’ Bear figurines, a crib, double strollers, a changing table, bedding, luggage, lamps the list goes on.
In addition, they will have baked goods for sale. For those inclined, they will have a donation jar.
“Every dollar donated to us is tax deductible and no amount is too small,” said Burton.
According to Brooker, the money raised goes toward research and helping people who can’t afford to get the treatments they require.
Each will be riding in memory of a family member or loved one who has fought cancer.
King, 41, rides for a fellow teacher, Jeanie Lane, who died of bladder cancer in 2004.
Roberts, 50, rides for her mother, who survived breast cancer, and a co-worker Barbara Boyer.
Miklavcic, 57, rides for her best friend who died last year of melanoma.
Burton, 31, rides for a co-worker’s granddaughter and in memory of a grandfather.
Brooker, 32, will ride in memory of her friend, Tommy Barnes, who died this year and in honor of his family who supported his battle.
The ride begins in Louisville and extends over two days with the bikers going approximately 80 miles each day.
Last year it came through Frankfort, but according to King, who is doing her second ride, this year it will take an Indiana route.*
Somewhere near the half-way mark, the riders camp together.
“It’s not as bad as it sounds,” King said, grinning. “We are treated and fed well and we sleep well.”These five women are the epitome of multi-taskers.
Three of them have lost more than 100 pounds each. Four work outside the home. Four are married and have children. All exercise daily.
And then there are the bikes. Burton calls hers “her baby.”
They are not just any bikes, but ones built to go the distance. They are a far cry from the bikes most people grew up with. They have computers that log everything except conversation.
Michelle received hers from her husband, Eddie, as a Mother’s Day gift.
Miklavcic said she was told her bike was her inheritance.
The group rides daily and has also ridden in other fund-raising rides.
“We think this is one way we can help others and get healthy ourselves,” Brooker said.
They have their war stories bitten and chased by dogs, being run off the road by drivers, cat calls, whistles, disgusting remarks and their favorite: a group of young men who stopped and threw open a car door, almost throwing the riders.
“Would you please ask drivers to share the road with us?” Burton requested.
While the group has fun together working toward their goal of entering the ride, they are serious about its mission.
“We want to do what we can to find cures for these cancers,” Miklavcic said.
For anyone who would like to help the bikers reach their goal of riding in September, contributions can be mailed to Ride to Conquer Cancer, 319 Erin Way, Frankfort, KY 40601. www.ridetovictory.org
*The Ride isn't actually going through Indiana