Day 3 – To Vernon

“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we lived.  It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” – Nelson Mandela

Here we are at Day 3 already! It’s hard to believe we’ve already put 260km in on our 2015 Cycle of Hope journey…but we have, and we’re now in Vernon ready to roll out to Kelowna first thing in the morning!

What should have been a benign, easy day travelling from home to the Okanagan turned into quite the epic journey for some of our vehicles and riders! It started off with one vehicle almost leaving behind one of the riders at the Swartz Bay ferry terminal, another vehicle had a mechanical issue that required they leave it at the dealership (in Kelowna!) so it can get fixed before we head home on Monday, and yet another one was rear ended 🙁 Everyone is ok! Only 1 bike was injured in the process and we’ve already got a replacement in the works.

cid_340We did have some great moments today that shouldn’t be forgotten…like the mini donuts we found in Hope (yummy!!), the unexpected message that one of our riders sons will be able join us for the weekend, the fact that we all got to spend time together OFF our bikes…to play cards, eat lunch and dinner together, share some laughs along the way…the little moments that make the reality of what we’re doing a little less painful.

Despite all the trails and tribulations of the day everyone is in good spirits and ready to conquer the ride tomorrow. Seems that is what this year has been all about…surviving set backs, dealing with unexpected changes in plans, recovering from personal challenges that pushed riders

outside their comfort zone.

All of our challenges though are NOTHING compared to the challenges someone living with ALS goes through on a daily basis. My dad passed away from ALS 8 years ago and he faced more challenges in those 13 months he had ALS than he’d had in his previous 56 years. It was so hard to watch him lose control of his body yet so inspiring to watch and listen to his determination to battle this horrible disease. He was hell bent on finding a cure, raising awareness, raising money, helping others with ALS…

cid_339He wanted to leave a legacy when he passed away, something physical.  So he built a beautiful house for my mom that

is definitely something to remember him by. He also worked so hard in those last 13 months of his life trying to figure out just what this ALS thing was all about that I wanted to remember his determination in a different way – I wanted to carry on that strength, determination, courage…so I joined Cycle of Hope whose mission is to inspire hope in those living with ALS, to raise awareness of the disease and to raise much needed money to help all aspects of ALS – home care needs, specialized equipment, research funds, special funds for the surviving children’s education. I am so proud of Cycle of Hope and what we’ve been able to accomplish despite our set backs, and I know darn well that my dad would be extremely proud of me participating in such a significant and meaningful journey on his behalf. I love you dad. Thanks for the strength and encouragement to carry on the fight on your behalf.

By Jennifer Pendray

Posted in ALS Cycle of Hope.

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