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Why We Ride

My name is Natalia and this is why I ride for my dad.

Why I Ride for Leszek GormleyOn February 27, my dad Leszek Gormley, U.S. Army Veteran, Machinist, Husband, Father, and Grandfather, passed away from Stage IV Lung Cancer after a short 6 month fight. My dad had such a will to overcome his illness and was such a fighter that it was heartbreaking that his chance to beat this was cut short..

My husband and I will be participated in the American Lung Association's Ride Around The Sound - Washington in honor of my dad. Few know that lung cancer is the most common cancer-related death, taking more lives than breast, colon and prostate cancer combined. When my coworker shared with me that she rode with the American Lung Association for her family members affected by lung disease, I knew it was perfect timing. This was the closure I needed, to say good bye to my dad since I didn’t have the opportunity. I started training for the long distance. My husband agreed to join me; even though he is stationed with the Navy on a submarine hundreds of feet underwater, he is training on a stationary bike until he gets back on land.

We are honored to be around so many people who have dedicated their time and health to help families who are suffering get the cures and help that they need. Know that you can spread the word of how important it is to fund research for lung disease. Even sharing with one person is powerful and sends an amazing message.

Natalia and Timothy Mayes
Team Leszek Gormley

Our names are Emma and Bradley and this is why we ride.

Emma and Bradley Handziuk Round CornersI found growing up in Atlanta, air quality was something that affected our day to day life. Often in the summer, the air quality would be so bad that children and older adults were advised not to spend time outside. Not being able to go outside in the summer -- what a miserable way to live!

Bradley re-introduced me to my childhood love of bicycling. Now we both bike for our daily commute, trips to the store, and exploring Seattle, Portland, Vancouver, and many of the other places we go for vacation. Training for this ride is a healthy, low emissions way of spending time together.

We hope that by participating in this ride, we will also inspire those around us to think about decreasing their carbon footprint, choosing a bike over a car when possible, and donating to the American Lung Association toward their efforts to help improve our air quality.

Thank you for your support. You are making a difference.

Emma and Bradley Handziuk
The Handy Handziuks

My name is Nikki and this is why I ride.

Why I ride NikkiI am a 31-year-old moderate asthmatic, who has worked really hard to conquer my breathing and become an active runner. I have successfully finished multiple half marathons and a marathon. During some down time due to an injury, I started cycling more frequently and now I'm hooked. I commute to work in Seattle via bike, and trained to ride 80 miles for Reach the Beach for the American Lung Association. I was in a cycling accident the week before Reach the Beach, fracturing my left elbow. I completed the ride, but from the 28 mile start. My plan is to make up for my lost ride, by getting back on the bike and training for the next Reach The Beach.  I hope my efforts will once again garner awareness and support for the ALA's worthy lung-related research and education programs.

As someone who has had to work around my lungs to do all the things I love, who has been frustrated by the limitations of my own body, this is a cause close to my heart. Successfully completing this ride, hopefully injury-free this time, will be my warrior stance against my own condition. It will be about standing up for others with asthma or lung disease who can’t breathe to cycle.

The money we raise in this process will support ALA’s tobacco cessation programs. It will fund their gallant research to cure lung cancer and other diseases such as COPD, emphysema and tuberculosis. It will fund research to create asthma drugs and treatments with fewer side-effects and better long term success. And the big concern in my native Seattle and for me as an outdoor-loving asthmatic: it will even maintain efforts to reduce and eliminate air pollution, second hand smoke and other environmental health concerns.

Please join me in going the extra mile by joining Reach the Beach. Help me, along with the American Lung Association, continue the FIGHT FOR AIR.

Thank you for your support. You are making a difference.



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