It had been years since I last rode a bike, didn’t know what I was truly getting into, and never in a million years did I think it would turn into this.
My first fundraising Multiple Sclerosis (MS) event was the NYC walk the spring right before my brother Josh and sister-in-law Amy’s wedding – Team Amy. I raised a little over $2k for the walk and at that point knew I wanted to continue my efforts. Why? Because I finally had my sister-like figure, a SIL that I could look up to. Amy was, and still is my number 1 champion, and the reason I decided to start riding for MS.
So, in 2011 I decided to do something badass for MS. I registered for my first bikeMS 150 mile ride from Quincy, MA to Provincetown, MA… problem was, I didn’t own a bike! Fixed that problem fast, hopped on and began training, all with a very injured right ankle that was due for surgery the week after I’d complete the ride. Being a newbie, not knowing anyone that would also be participating, I posted on the Cape Cod Getaway (CCG) Facebook page looking for advice and assistance, you know me, an introvert! That was the day that quickly changed my path to what it became! Michael Augustine, captain and founder of Team Velox Rota (TVR) recruited me, and well the rest of the story is pretty much history 😂
Hustling my efforts to raise funds, I was top fundraiser with TVR, started to make awesome connections with the Greater New England MS chapter and Connecticut MS Chapter, my groove was moving in positive directions. In 2014, TVR became incorporated officially, and Michael asked me to become a board member. Naturally, my title was Development Director. This was also the teams 10th anniversary year, our participation numbers increased, our fundraising dollars went up, it was an awesome year. And because of my amazing supporters who continued to donate to a cause so important to me, I was 4th top fundraiser! It was a humbling year!
In 2016, I had the most pleasure of having a dear friend take part in building my fundraising efforts and taking it to an entirely new level. Cruising for a Cause was born! We raised just about $35k that first year, and knew we had to do it again. So we did and came pretty close to doubling the dollars raised for research and Hayley’s Hope and Michaela’s Miracle MS Memorial Foundation.
I started taking advantage of my bikeMS passport in 2016 also riding in the NYC bikeMS ride. That was the first time Amy saw me cross a finish line! It was then I decided I needed to fulfill TVRs mission by #CoveringGroundToEndMS so for 2017 I registered for the Alabama Challenge & Tour de Beach Ride… 5 days and 450 miles. It was after that accomplishment that I asked Dayle to join me in some rides. Well some turned into #50rides50states5years.. we knew we needed to share our story, so here we are!
I hope you share with friends and family our site and other social media avenues. It is through grassroots and sharing that we will create more awareness about MS and raise more dollars to find a cure. #WhateverItTakes