• Route: Rockies
  • Ride Year: 2023
  • Hometown: San Antonio

About: Howdy y’all! My name is Daria but you can call me Dasha!
I’ve lived in Texas all 21/21 years of my life so I love summer and ice cream and driving with the windows down. I am studying neuroscience (which means I have finally admitted my love for biology), and am also minoring in Russian so Всем привет!!!! Let me sum up my personality for you: I am a cancer, type 3 ennegram, my love language is words of affirmation, and I show love through acts of service. When I’m not in school, you can catch me going on walks with friends, reading, Zilker-ing, Orange Theory, working as a caregiver (hi Ava!), and going to my favorite place in the world: camp! The last 7 years, I’ve spent every summer at a wonderful camp for children and adults with disabilities. Through camp, I’ve been gifted the greatest friends and lessons that inspire me everyday and push me to pursue medicine and live an inclusive life. There aren’t enough words to express how magical and integral camp has been on my life, just take my word for it.

Thanks for getting to know me! If you have any questions, acts of service for me, or just want me to get to know you, email me!

Why I Ride

First and foremost, I ride for my parents. They have taught me how to love, laugh things off, and give to others. One of the most important things they have given me is knowledge. Throughout my childhood, my parents role-modeled healthy habits and ended up bestowing an abundance of cancer-preventing knowledge to me. I was raised with an intrinsic sense of living a healthy lifestyle. What really solidified my understanding of my upbringing was my dad’s prostate cancer diagnosis and my mom’s melanoma a few years ago. Luckily I still get to live and learn with them, but theirs (and my) outcome might have been different had my parents not been educated, not trusted doctors, or been proactive in their health. Being able to take the knowledge I have and share it with others, the way my parents shared with me, is the best way to give back to the people who love and support me the most. I love you both with all my heart.

The other major reason I ride is for my friends I have met at Camp CAMP, who time and time again are facing the tribulations of living in an exclusive, ableist world, including the realms of cancer and medicine. Being a caregiver for several individuals with various types of disabilities has made it apparent to me that preventing and detecting cancer, illness, or any ailment looks different for individuals who may be nonverbal, not neurotypical, or have behavioral or mobility challenges. As a future medical professional, and more importantly as a friend, I believe in a future where being disabled doesn't make you more vulnerable to something like cancer. As someone able-bodied and inspired, I am excited to ride to Alaska in honor of my friends who have taught and loved me the most. Camp has provided me the most meaningful experiences and friendships. It has taught me to be patient and accepting. It has taught me to see the value in everyone, no matter their ability.

I am riding for my best friends, Abbie and Ava, who I met through camp and caregave for. They encourage me to become the doctor I want them to have- someone who uplifts and values their differences, not diminishes them. For a future where Abbie and Ava are prioritized. For a future where we can have a better grasp on cancer prevention in all the Abbies and Avas of the world. I will always have room for these girls in my life, and I am riding to make sure they always will be. Thank you to you both for teaching me love does not need words.
I'd like to also thank and ride for my friends Grace, Peter, Teddy, and their families, for loving and teaching me so wonderfully.

I am riding for Michael, Madison, and Jovie Harrington, Molly and Maverick McKinney, and Lorraine and Selah Patterson. I'll be thinking about you all and my camp family all along the way.

I am riding in remembrance of Sylvia Marwah, Harold Lemons, Alice Field, Lori Leinhart, and my uncle Gregg- whom I was so excited to share my T4K journey with.

For all of you. For Abbie and Ava. For Gregg. For mom and dad,

To Alaska and back.

p.s. If I can ride for you or anyone you know, please don't hesitate to reach out. I'd love to hear yours, or another's, story!