By David LeDuc, Executive Director, Bonnie J Addario Lung Caner Foundation
Please don’t tell John, but that was my first thought when John told me he wanted to ride his bike from Philly to SF to raise money for our Foundation. It is not that I questioned John’s resolve, but this trek is a herculean task even for seasoned riders and John, by his own admission, was far from seasoned. So, how far would he make it???
Fast forward a few months, lots and lots of miles, and personally witnessing John reach the summit at Monarch Pass and “doubting Thomas” has turned into “believing David”. I mean, the Rockies are no joke. Add in wind, hail and semis cruising by at 65+ and you end up with a ride that is not for the faint of heart. I was simply driving the support vehicle and I was mentally exhausted by the time I reached the pass. But John never wavered and actually made it to the top with a smile, followed by a few well-earned tears as he realized what he had accomplished. I felt privileged to share the moment with him!!
Beyond just the honor it has been to spend time with John as he moves through Colorado, it has really been a blast just hanging out during the down moments. We have made friends at just about every stop, including the top of the pass, shared numerous laughs and talked about the importance of family in our lives.
Perhaps if I had known sooner how John feels about the people in his life I would have realized that the question was never how far he would make it, but how many he would take on the journey with him. If you have read any of the prior posts, you know that number is well into the hundreds.
So John, please accept my sincere apologies that I ever doubted and my sincere thanks for allowing me to share a few days with you. It has been a complete joy.
Only a few weeks left so “don’t mess it up”.