October 3, 2018
The 24th Positive Spin for ALS, now named Ride To Defeat ALS, was held in Wayland, MA, on September 23, 2018. https://ptatlarge.typepad.com/ptatlarge/2018/09/ride-to-defeat-als-24-years-until-a-cure.html
Every year since 2001, Myke Farricker and I have made a ceremonial ride after our official fund raising rides have been completed. For the past ten years, we've driven to Truro, hopped on our bikes and made an eight mile jaunt to First Landing Park next to the breakwater at the end of Route 6A in Provincetown, MA, where we stand and honor the men and women whose lives have been changed by a diagnosis of ALS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease. This is personal. Myke's brother Pete, and my dear friend Janet Speers were lost to ALS.
We are usually joined by Susan Lyman of Provincetown, whose husband, Doug Trumbo, was a popular member of the Provincetown EMS team and died of the disease in 1996. Susan read about my Positive Spin in the Provincetown Banner. She a and her kids Sam and Hannah met me at the Pilgrim Landing Park when I completed my "Spin" in 1998.
While on the breakwater this year, we met Moffat, the world traveling bunny rabbit, with his globe trotting owner Christy Howard and her husband Jim, who were on a tour of New England from their home in Colorado. The chance meeting was amazing for several reasons. One of Jim's mentors succumbed to ALS. What are the chances our paths would cross at the moment Myke and I rode to First Landing Park in Provincetown?
We're proud of our work to raise money for the ALS Association MA Chapter and to support men and women and their families who are coping with the disease. What...you've never heard of the Zarb Corporation? Myke will tell you about it!
Christy and Jim Howard celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary with a two week jam-packed tour of New England. Of course, Moffat was along for the ride. Moffat is the perfect intermediary for teaching history to her primary grade students. She's pretty good at it.
Christy was named 2017 State History Teacher of the year in Colorado by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. She was nominated for National History Teacher of 2019, pretty rarefied territory.
Christy takes photos of Moffat, brings them back to her classroom and viola, uses photos of the peripatetic rabbit as teaching tools. Even Susan, Myke, and I got a photo opp on the jetty.
After we met on the jetty, we walked through First Landing Park.
She'll undoubtedly use the photo of Moffat on the plaque to talk about the Pilgrim's first landing and teach history, geography and maybe squeeze in some math.
One of the reasons they chose Provincetown? They're Teddy Roosevelt fans. President Roosevelt laid the cornerstone of the 252 foot granite Pilgrim Monument in 1907. And of course Moffat had to include that you-can-see-it-from-10-miles-at -sea tallest granite monument int the United States in his travels. (Photo by Christy Howard)
To complete the TR connection, they dined at the historic Red Inn where President Roosevelt and his wife dined on their visit.
Moffat is now part of the lore of our ride!
Sam participated in the ride in Wayland in his senior high school year in 2006. In 2007, his freshman and sophomore years in college, he joined me and Myke for three Post Spins Spins from the Outer Reach Motel in Truro to the First Landing Park. The whole family raised funds through 2009.
Sam hasn't ridden with us since moving to Baltimore but...thanks to Moffat, he's thinking about rejoining us next year!
"So this year is the 21st year of my family knowing you and sharing in your mission to ride to defeat ALS! What a ride and joy it has been!" says Susan.