- Route: Sierra
- Ride Year: 2019
- Hometown: Corpus Christi, TX
- School Year: Junior
- Major: Neuroscience
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hey, look at this, you have made it all the way to my personal page! Thanks for checking it out, now allow me to share the highlights of my first twenty years. I was the first-born child of two lovely parents (You’re welcome mom) in California and then migrated to the wonderful state of Texas. First indicates that there was a second. That would be my brother, Bryn, who is best described by the ridiculous amount of time he spends fixing his hair in the morning. It is more time than the rest of my family spends getting ready collectively. He is a little prima donna.
In more recent history, I came to UT to learn a little bit about neuroscience. In my free time, ah just kidding, I have none. In my time not relegated to studying I love to sit in coffee shops, read books, cook food, and take long naps. I think cooking is best done with great friends. To me nothing is more relaxing than getting lost in the madness of a kitchen and sharing something I have made with the people I care about. I am always listening to music, I like to give my life a sound track. Even the most mundane activities seem far more epic when they’re done to Blue Rondo à la Turk. Finally, a bio of myself would not be complete without talking about my love of coffee. I say that I am a connoisseur, but I am told by my good friends that I am a “coffee snob”. Whichever it may be, I like to think that I am composed of 50 percent coffee and 50 percent water, the perfect ratio. With that being said, I want to thank you for making it all the way to the end of the vignette of my life.
Why I Ride
I have been fortunate enough in my life to not have known the pains of cancer in my immediate family. Emily, however, who I would consider nothing less than a sister to me, endured many hardships that I only heard from a distance. When I moved schools halfway through high school Laura, Emily’s mother, fought and beat breast cancer. I visited a few times during Laura’s battle, and from an outside perspective you would not have been able to tell she was fighting cancer. She was full of smiles, her wig looked as indiscernible as a new haircut, and she was living life as usual, at least this was what I saw. What I did not see were the long nights, the day after chemo, the fights, the stress, the sacrifices made by not only herself but her family as well, and the actual toll it took on her body. I only heard about this second hand from Emily. I realized that how I saw Laura was not a real indicator of how hard fighting cancer is. Emily painted me a more accurate picture of what the fight looks like. Luckily after a little over a year of battling cancer, she went into remission and is now cancer free. Even if I was not there to provide any help to their family while I was gone, I want to show Laura that, although her battle is hopefully finished for good, I stand with her. Laura's story was a realization of how unaware I was about the terrible effects of cancer. This newfound realization, coupled with my lifelong desire to be able to help improve other people’s lives, led me to Texas 4000, but a large portion of why I ride was cultivated after I joined.
My mom was an OB/GYN, so my life was filled with many rather vivid but beautiful stories of life being brought into the world. I had many years of spending inordinate amounts of time in H-E-B (our Texas grocery store) because she would be stopped by several patients who wanted to show how much the child she helped bring into the world had grown. More recently, she started doing family practice, and has had to deal more with trying to save lives. A story about a recent patient of hers has really resonated with me. This patient had an issue that was brushed over by numerous other physicians, until they went to my mom. My mom recommended that they go get checked out only to find an early stage cancer. She called when it happened and said, “I saved a life today.” Being a stressed out and non-attentive college student I said, “that’s cool.” That-is-cool, she saved someone’s life and I thought it was “cool.” It did not really come back up until I listened to a few of my fellow riders why I ride stories. Hearing what they had gone through because they were not as fortunate as this patient made it sink a little deeper. She gave that patient the rest of their life. Had she not done this, it would likely have gone unnoticed, maybe until it would have been too late. I realized how a simple act of attention, of knowledge saved their life. If we all paid a little more attention, gave a little more time and effort, how many could we save?
I joined because I realized how terribly cancer affects people. I joined because I wanted to show that although I may not know your story specifically or what you went through, I care. Now, I ride because I realized the more time I give, the more knowledge I spread, and the more people I help, the more lives I can improve, and possibly, if I could be so fortunate, the more lives that I could save. I ride for all of those who have suffered because I want to be a part of an incredible group of people who love others more than we do ourselves. I ride for these two incredible women, who I have been fortunate enough to have in my life.
If you would like me to ride for yourself or someone you know, feel free to reach out to me. You are the reason why I am a part of this incredible organization so please do not hesitate to contact me. I would love to hear your story!
With great appreciation,
Below is the ever expanding list of those who I ride for- Laura Nash.
Paul Winkler Van Willis, Maria Rincon, Laurie Burk, Jean O’Connell, Diana Martinez, Larry Stones, Steven Maggger, Mary Ann, Michael Borne, Grandfather Gord, Evan Sander, Mara Bond, Lana Schultz, Andre Juneau, Leah, Rob & Riley, Sue Henderson, Gene Baker, Dani, Delia, Jose, Pat Roland, Trent Gibson.