Karen Bob has never had cancer, but she has had enough of the life-threatening illness.
Having seen friends and family forced to fight the disease, Bob has decided to wage her own battle against cancer. The Surrey resident is participating in the eighth-annual Ride to Conquer Cancer on Aug. 27-28, a two-day, 200-kilometre cycling event.
“I’m not a bike rider. The last time I rode was more than 30 years ago in my early 20s,” she said, calling herself “crazy” for attempting such a ride. “They say you never forget how to ride and I have learned a few safety tips.”
Bob has been placed with Team Taylor for the ride, which begins in Cloverdale and concludes in Redmond, Wash. The group is training in advance of the event with weekend rides and has given Bob a jumpstart in collecting donations.
She has set a goal of $4,000 and is more than halfway there at roughly $2,600 in donations.
More than 2,000 riders participated in the Ride to Conquer Cancer a year ago, raising $8.4 million for the B.C. Cancer Foundation. After learning of the event, Bob decided it was time to get involved.
“I heard about the ride when a friend mentioned it,” she said. “I Googled it and thought it would be so cool.”
Bob has seen too much of cancer over the years. Her father, sister, cousin and aunt were all diagnosed with the disease, her aunt losing her battle with cervical cancer.
Bob also had a scare with her daughter several years ago. After a bout with the flu, her then three-year-old daughter began to develop bruises which were a result of a virus which attacked platelets in the blood.
“She needed a platelet transplant and we were told the condition often leads to leukemia,” Bob recalled. “She came out of it okay, but it’s frightening for a mother to see her daughter go through it.
“I have kids and grandchildren and I don’t want them to suffer the way some of my friends did.”
After hearing about the ride from her teammates, Bob is looking forward to taking it herself.
“It goes through the back roads, and along some farm roads,” she said. “My teammates say it’s a picturesque ride, and quite beautiful.”
More information about the ride can be found at http://www.conquercancer.ca
Donations can be made at http://bit.ly/29R5Uli