Live Strong!

by

Craig HerreraWhat an event! Congratulations San Jose! Sunday, July 13, was the inaugural LIVESTRONG Challenge in San Jose and we had an amazing turn out. While talking with my new friend Renee from the Lance Armstrong Foundation, we had 3000 participants (runners and cyclists) which was 200% over the goal! Lance Armstrong spoke on stage after the event and said it was the best inaugural event for the LIVESTRONG Challenge and they can’t wait to come back in 2009! I will also be back with my team as well!

The day was challenging… physically and at times emotionally. I was riding in memory of my Uncle Gilbert who died of esophageal cancer in January 2008. I was also riding in honor of a good friend Beth who is undergoing chemo at this time. I think most people were riding with someone in mind and in their hearts. At times, I had a hard time spotting the bumps in the road because of the tears in my eyes. My parents are also in town visiting from my hometown which is just a few miles north of Santa Fe, New Mexico. My mom and uncle were very close and he was like a father to me too. So, I rode with his name on my new LIVESTRONG jersey and he popped into my mind many times. He loved California, the beaches and the cuisine! He and my aunt were with my mom on every trip to visit me. So, I miss him often. He loved hearing about my fun runs, cycling adventures and triathlons.

I also want to say thank to you all the volunteers who made it special all along the way and all the teams that rode together. There was also one team that stood out to me. You all know I am a pet lover! Team Spike was formed by a man who lost his dog to cancer. Soon after he learned his father had cancer. Both the father and son were riding Sunday! Thank you!

NBC11 was a proud sponsor of the event and I had a team of 11 riders for this event. Two team members did the 10-mile ride, and nine of us did the 50-mile ride. This is our team photo at the end of the ride (minus two riders).


Back row, Mitch, Paul, Jim, Gary, Anthony, Ken. Front row, Julie, myself and Jean.

Craig Herrera
NBC11 WeatherPlus Meteorologist

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4 Responses to “Live Strong!”

  1. Alyssa Says:

    Wonderful post!!!! I did the 10-mile ride, in honor of my parents, who are both fighting cancer, and in memory of family members (and one of our dogs) who lost their lives to the disease. I also found it to be a very emotional event.
    And I agree; the volunteers were AWESOME!

  2. Pat Lawson Says:

    Great job Craig! Inspring and emotional seemed to be my two favorite adjectives of the day and you expressed those same qualities in your writing of your experience! The Wellness Community Silicon Valley and its volunteers hosted the first Power Stop for the riders. I’m not sure who had more fun, the volunteers or the riders! I’d like to extend an invitation for you to look at our website (www.svwellness.org) to learn of our organization and what we will have to offer to cancer patients and their caregivers. Keep up your athletic efforts that benefit so many others!

  3. Craig Says:

    Hello Pat,
    Thank you so much for taking time to read and reply to my blog! And THANK YOU for helping and telling me about the team from Wellness Community Silicon valley! I just looked at the web site you sent to me, wow, what a challenge!
    Maybe I can do it one day!

    The LiveStrong Challenge was amazing. At times I was very sad, losing my uncle not too long ago, and most recently, one of my dogs, both to cancer. It has been a tough year but having the support of family, friends and new friends along the way has been overwhelming!

    Friends like you make it easier and worth every second of training and fundraising. Perhaps we can ride together one day in one of these challenging rides.

    I hope you have a wonderful day and week! Thank you for writing!!!

  4. Craig Says:

    Hi Alyssa,

    Thank you so much for reading my blog and for taking time to write in about your experience! Thank you for riding too! It’s tough when you have so many personal stories, so I’m glad you had an incredible experience!

    I’ll be thinking about your parents and hope they are doing well!

    We just lost one of our dogs too, last Friday, also to cancer, and I can’t wait until the day we no longer have to ride because cancer will be no more! Until that day comes, I’ll doing all that I can to help.

    I hope you have a wonderful day Alyssa, and thank you!

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