As hard as it is to believe, 2012 will be the 11th anniversary of my ‘Ride From Reno’ for Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI)! What started with me riding solo 667-miles from Reno to Salt Lake City, with Janet and Josh driving support, has turned into an event that, this year, may include 300 people. It doesn’t seem possible!
The picture you see was taken at the top of Sacramento Pass on Day-4 of the 2011 ‘Ride From Reno’ and is not far from the Nevada/Utah border. This summit has become sacred to me and those who ride with me. It is here we stop to remember those we are aware of who have battled cancer or who are currently battling this damnable disease. Whether they are living or not, we remember them by writing their names on the road insuring their memory will live on.
If you’d like me to write the names on Sacramento Pass of your family members or friends who have endured cancer, please e-mail those names to me at [email protected]
When I was diagnosed with Stage IV Head & Neck cancer on December 26th, 2000, I stood a 0 to 25% chance of surviving 5-years. Because of the leading-edge treatment I received from Dr. Gordon Watson and his colleagues at HCI, coupled with the blessings of a kind and gracious Heavenly Father, I was restored to health. And, I’m alive today to enjoy being an integral part of the lives of our 5-children and 10-grandchildren. And, that’s why I’ve continued to do this fund-raising ride for HCI.
The facts are simple: 1 out of 3 women and 1 out of 2 men will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetimes. To make it more personal, think about your own family: mom, dad, brothers, sisters, grandparents, your children and spouse, etc. As you think of them, and count them, 1, 2, 3 . . . if it’s not one of them, it’s you.
Treatments for cancer are still draconian. Clinically, treatment is known as surgery, radiation, and chemo, but those descriptions far too clinical. Cancer and its associated treatment are personal at the most basic level and I refer to treatment regimens as slash, burn, and poison, which is much more descriptive of what really happens.
The results of the research that goes on at Huntsman Cancer Institute is shared across the world as efforts continue to find cures for >150 types of this damnable disease. In addition to seeking cures for cancer, research continues at HCI to find better tolerated, less toxic treatments for cancer. Why is this important? One of the chemo drugs I took has the potential of causing me to have leukemia later in life. To me, that sucks. In essence, the medical community gave me the option of a drug that could possibly save my life then, but cause me to have leukemia later. Not much of an option is it? And cancer patients are faced with this kind of dilemma each day. That’s why finding better tolerated, less toxic treatments for cancer are so critical.
So I am asking you to open your wallet, purse, checkbook, debit or credit card, and make a generous donation to Huntsman Cancer Institute. My goal is to raise > $30K this year, every penny of which will go to support research at HCI. My companions this year, riding with me from Reno to Salt Lake City, are Jason Bleak, Ravell Call, Todd Handy, Steve Kelly, Larry Peterson, Mike Petroff, Joe Plater, Loren Roundy, Dan Sellers, Darcie Strong, and Scott Westfall. We all pay 100% of our expenses so every cent you contribute will end up at HCI. To help you and your family and to help me and my family.
Please make a generous donation to Huntsman Cancer Institute through my Ride From Reno, the final day of which is now known as the Huntsman 140. To contribute online, please go to www.h140.kintera.org/jeffwarren.
Checks can be made payable to Huntsman Cancer Foundation and mailed to: Huntsman Cancer Foundation, Attn: Jen Murano, 500 Huntsman Way, Salt Lake City, Utah 84108.
You will be able to keep track of what’s happening during the ride via www.ikickedcancersbutt.org. We’ll be posting daily updates and pics so check in often. And, when inspiration (or boredom) strike, take a moment to leave your encouragement and comments in the Guestbook section of the website.
Once again, I will be carrying in my seat-pack a list of names of people who have (or have had) cancer. It’s my way of sending a message to this freakin’ disease that we’ll never forget those who’ve fought the valiant fight, and also my way of honoring those with whom I feel a very special camaraderie. If you’d like me to carry the name(s) of your family member or friend, I’d be honored to do so and consider it a sacred trust. Please forward your names to me at [email protected] If you’ve submitted names in the past, they’ll continue to remain on my list from previous year’s Rides.
Thank you for your generosity,
P.S. When you get home from the office this evening, hug your spouse a little longer and harder, play with the children a little more enthusiastically, call your Mom and Dad and tell them how proud you are to be their son or daughter, or call your children and tell them how proud you are to call them