Why am I riding in the National Brain Tumor Ride?
I have been riding a bike since I was a child. When I graduated from high school I did my first cyclotouring trip with a friend. I continued to ride for fun and fitness through college and beyond. When I became a parent my wife Ellen and I naturally taught our children to ride and our family developed a love of cycling together. Ellen and I began taking short overnight trips with Jared and Adam in bike seats when they were 4 and 2 years old. After a couple of years they graduated to being able to ride on their own and the trips got longer and more challenging. Our last was an 1100 mile tour of Denmark and southern Sweden in 1999.
In 2003 our son Jared was diagnosed with spinal/cranial tumors. After fighting this terrible disease for almost 2 1/2 years, Jared passed away on September 27, 2005. He was 23 years old. Jared was an artist of extraordinary ability and passion. He was an athlete and league champion in wrestling, track, and soccer. He was a scholar of art history, hispanic culture and was fluent in Spanish. Jared endured the most rigorous treatments at the Jimmy Fund and Boston Children's Hospital all the while maintaining his kindness, his positive outlook, and living his life to the fullest. The care and compassion that Jared received there and that we receive there to this day was, and remains, extraordinary.
My bicycle is more than a way to get to work or to the store. It is more than a way to stay fit and it is more than a social activity to do with my friends. My bicycle is a vehicle that transports me. When I ride my bike I am free. When I ride my bike I can meditate and contemplate. My bike is a vehicle for change. It is a way to connect. It is a symbol of hope and prayer and spirituality. It is an emblem of effort, of exertion, and of labor, and I am inspired by Jared's will, determination, and spirit. When I ride my bike in the Brain Tumor Ride my bicycle represents those who cannot ride and who we can help by riding for them.
2021 marks my 10th ride. Please make a generous donation and please tell your friends about my efforts. Join us in our fight to rid the world of this terrible disease so that your children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren never have to hear the word cancer again.
with love and best wishes to all,
NOTE: Team Kermit is not an "open" team. If you'd like to learn more, please contact me at Sbranfpots@aol.com
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