• Route: Smoky-mountains
  • Ride Year: 2021
  • Hometown: Houston, TX

About: Hey, I’m Anaelle and I’m so grateful for being part of the 2021 Texas 4000 team!! Although I grew up in Texas, I actually am a French citizen and completed all my education in a French school in Houston. I am no stranger to long distance; I love running or biking, so you can probably catch me training for a half marathon or even a triathlon. If I’m not running miles on end, I am probably playing ultimate, learning a new language, or spending time in a coffee shop.

As a Neuroscience pre-med student, I am also passionate about non-profits, and am so excited for being exposed to this sector through T4K. As a pre-med student, I aspire to start a non-profit that helps relieve the current inequalities in healthcare access in the US. Many in the US are uninsured and struggle to receive affordable healthcare. I thus hope to be more involved in healthcare policy to bridge the gap in healthcare accessibility.

Why I Ride

Cancer affects people everywhere. Every day people fight against it, and some unfortunately lose the fight. This was the case for my grandfather who passed away from lung cancer when I was just a toddler. My mother’s childhood friend, Nadine, was also diagnosed with rectal cancer about two years ago. As Nadine lived in France, the long distance separating her from my mother made her increasingly worried. Unable to be by her side throughout the extensive treatment, my mother was always nervously waiting for updates about her condition. Thankfully, Nadine fully recovered. Although distance separated them, my mother supported her throughout the whole process, giving her strength throughout her struggle. As shown through Nadine’s case, a fight is better overcome by several than alone. I thus ride to join a community that gives strength during these tough times. I ride for my grandfather who lost the fight to cancer, I ride for Nadine who won it, and I ride for the ones currently fighting it and all the other people who have been affected directly or indirectly by cancer, whether close by or separated by long distance. I ride to remind the ones affected that they are not alone.

I was also highly inspired in joining T4K with my previous experiences in riding the MS150 for three consecutive years, a 150 mile bike ride raising money for research against Multiple Sclerosis. This bike ride showed me the importance of community when fighting against a common enemy. Although the bike ride was challenging, my mental strength does not compare to the one needed by families and individuals going through the pain, stress, and emotions faced with cancer or other illnesses. Through T4K, I hope to become a listening-ear to others’ struggles and advocate for the fight against cancer. Whether it is cancer or a neurodegenerative disease like Multiple Sclerosis, events like MS150 and Texas 4000 unite a community that brings strength to those fighting their illness.

I am extremely grateful for being part of Texas 4000, and through this journey, I inspire others to join the fight against cancer, spread prevention knowledge, support the families and friends whose lives have been affected by cancer, and support incredible research that will hopefully, one day, lead to a cancer-free future.

To Alaska and back!