Guest Post by Jon Adams
After losing my father in August 2014, I decided to do my first Ride to Conquer Cancer a year later. This was a way to honour my dad, and to help fight back against the cancer that he courageously battled for 15 years. I am now preparing for my 4th Ride and the one thing that I have learned over these past few years is that, unfortunately, there is no lack of motivation. I am constantly hearing of more individuals who have been diagnosed, are in treatment, or some who have sadly lost their respective battles to cancer. Something must be done, as we are all affected by cancer one way or another – and that is why I continue to Ride to Conquer Cancer.
2018 started out rather challenging for me; just six weeks into the year, I lost three colleagues who had their lives taken from them far too early. With that said, I dedicate my 2018 Ride to Conquer Cancer to these 3 special friends.
What is The Ride to Conquer Cancer?
The Ride to Conquer Cancer is a two day cycling journey that covers over 200 kilometres, held at the end of August. This particular year marks the 10th anniversary of the epic event and as we ride for hope, we will also be journeying to Hope, BC. Over the previous three rides, with incredible support from friends and family, I am proud to have raised over $20,000 for the BC Cancer Foundation.
My wife Jane, and children Hayden (7) & Mackenzie (4) are a huge part of this result. They continue to support my training, fundraising, and awareness effort, and my kids tell their teachers and friends about our Ride to Conquer Cancer effort, and are so proud of what we do to fight cancer as a family. I recently updated Mackenzie with our fundraising total just before reading bedtime stories, and she gave me the tightest bear hug and said “Dad you are soooo awesome!” My heart melted.
This 2018 fundraising effort was a little different as I was met with a touching donation from two young friends.
My Little Friends Give Back in a Big Way
A couple months ago, I woke up to find that a sizeable donation was made to my fundraising efforts for The Ride. It didn’t take me long to realize that the $450 donation was from my children’s friends – sisters Aydenne and Kendra.
Aydenne, who turned eight on May 12th, and Kendra, who turned six on May 7th, usually celebrate their birthdays together. This year, the two girls got the idea to use their birthday party as a fundraiser, after seeing several of their family members and friends impacted by the heartbreaking disease.
They had sent out birthday invitations that asked for donations in lieu of gifts “to help us kick cancer’s butt.” When I saw the invitation, I was pretty impressed to see kids of that age turn down the opportunity to get presents & toys, in order to donate to cancer research. Although my children attended the birthday, and we were happy to donate to their effort, I had never realized that their fundraising would go directly towards my Ride to Conquer Cancer – I did not expect that at all.
“I hope Kendra & Aydenne inspire others, young and old, as they certainly have inspired me.” – Jon Adams
It’s awful that Aydenne and Kendra, at such young ages, have personally been impacted with family members and friends having gone through various cancer treatments. I am beyond grateful for their contributions – as you can imagine how hard it is to give like this for six and eight year olds – and I am so proud of the girls for putting others before themselves. Thank you to their parents, Brittany & Brian, for their support and for their amazing parenting skills!
On August 25th & 26th, I will join my colleagues once again as the Captain of my corporate team of 25 riders. Every year, I have exceeded my personal fundraising goals and this year I have set the bar even higher – aiming for $10,000 by the Ride weekend. I am already more than 80% of the way to achieving my goal and hope that my fundraising efforts will not only help contribute towards cancer research, but will also continue to raise awareness about cancer. I will continue to participate in the Ride for the people in my life touched or taken by cancer, and to do my small part to help improve the lives of those with cancer in hopes that one day, no one else has to fight the same battle.
I hope Kendra & Aydenne inspire others, young and old, as they certainly have inspired me.
You may help the cause by contributing to my ride and the BC Cancer Foundation: www.conquercancer.ca/goto/JonathanAdams.