LETTER: Riding in PMC for Greg
The following is a letter to the editor.
I hope this letter finds you well and looking forward the 4th weekend.
This year I am training and preparing to ride my first PAN-MASS Challenge. It is a daunting feat. 163 miles in two days and the commitment to raise $4300.00. Why would anyone sign up for this? There are thousands of individual stories. Please take a moment to read mine.
I am riding to honor the life of Greg Dana, the Dana family and cancer research.Cancer has touched so many of our lives. This year it came close to our home and our small town of Westford. Greg Dana was a wonderful, spiritual and beloved man, husband, father and friend. He touched so many people’s hearts that literally the whole town came out to sing Christmas carols in his front yard for weeks while he was home in hospice.
Greg was a friend to all. He was one of those remarkable people who listened. Your time with him was always unique and special. He wanted to know you and he wanted to get to the heart of things. Greg was all heart. An example? There are many but I am ever reminded of this one – it’s about 2 months before he died and his big concern is how am I feeling with the cold I have. It wasn’t just a question, or polite conversation…he was truly concerned. He’s dying and he is concerned with my cold. That was Greg.
I could go on… but I only need to think of him to be instantly reminded of the gifts we are blessed with, the humanity we are graced with and the loving kindness that he bestowed upon me and all others that were lucky enough to know him.
When he passed a good number of his close friends began to commit to ride the PAN-MASS Challenge in his honor. I loved Greg too! Not only did I not have a bike but I am petrified of cycling having had two bad childhood accidents. On top of that my family is in extreme financial difficulty and buying a bike was out of the question; never mind committing to fundraising and sending two kids to college. It could not be a more difficult time. Yet, with the love for this selfless, compassionate, spiritual man that I had the honor of calling a friend - I simply committed!
Now – months later – with the help of a good friend I have a bike. With the help of other good friends I am learning to become an adequate cyclist (ok, so I still brake a bit going down steep hills but I am able to ride with a group and not be last one and I have done my first 50 miles at a 15.5 pace!).
Please join me in honoring Greg and his magnificent spirit. Please help in supporting the life-saving research and compassionate care of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. 100% OF EVERY RIDER RAISED DOLLAR GOES DIRECTLY TO DANA-FARBER.
Any amount in greatly appreciated. To donate you may send a check to 33 Concord Road Westford or donate on line.
Riding for Greg. He is with me every mile.