When I was a junior in high school, I met a woman that had a greater impact on me than I ever could’ve imagined. Her name is Jenny Scott. She visited my French class to share the worst moment of her life: the day she lost her 8-month-old daughter to Leukemia. At the end of her heartbreaking story, Mrs. Scott asked us to come out and walk Light the Night, a charity walk that raises money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I was in. I volunteered for that Light the Night and walked the Light the Night during my senior year.
Fast-forward about six years. During that time, I had moved to Los Angeles, gone to college, met my boyfriend; life had changed a lot. I wanted to get healthy, so I started looking for ways I could do that on my bike. After some research, Team in Training popped up. Team in Training would train me every Saturday for five-ish months to ride 100 miles in Lake Tahoe. I would also be raising money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the same foundation I had done Light the Night for in high school. I was definitely interested. The moment you hear about a young life taken by cancer, it never leaves you. Allie’s story (and her mother’s) came back to my mind. I should do this, I thought to myself. I can get healthy and have Allie keep my motivated. A few days later, I signed up.
That was three years ago. Since then, I’ve ridden 2,500 plus miles and raised over $6,500 for blood cancer research. Whenever I climb a long hill or feel like I just can’t ride anymore, I think about Allie and the other amazing people I’ve met affected by blood cancer. They couldn’t stop fighting cancer, so I can’t stop either. I’ve gone from just participating to being a mentor on the team, helping others stay motivated to ride and to raise more money for research. This fall, I’ll be an assistant coach!
Mrs. Scott and Allie have touched my life more than I ever thought possible. They opened a door to an amazing world of people that are determined to treatment, to end suffering, and to make sure that a child never has to get cancer ever again.
This year, I’ll be riding in Lake Tahoe again, in America’s Most Beautiful Bike Ride. On June 2, Team in Training chapters nationwide descend on Tahoe and pedal 100 miles for the cure. We’ll ride around the Lake and out to Truckee and back. With rest stops and one lunch stop, the ride will take most of the day, but when you’re surrounded by pine trees and stunning lake views, time slows down.
If you support Aimée’s cause like we do, read more about her ride and donate here on her Team in Training page. Deadline to donate is Wednesday, May 15. Remember: any bit helps to find a cure for blood cancer! Thanks, and high-fives all around.
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