Two Lambda sisters will be riding their bikes across the country to raise money and awareness about cancer. Mariadina DiGennaro and Erica Lai will bike for two months as part of the 4K for Cancer ride, which was started by a John Hopkins University student to honor his father who died of cancer. They will leave Baltimore on May 30 and arrive in San Francisco on July 31.
Riders will visit large cities and small towns across the country. Once they get to their nightly destinations, they will give community presentations about early detection of cancer. They are also going to cook dinner for Hope Lodge residents in Cleveland and St. Louis.
Each rider must raise $4500, which will be given to the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Baltimore Hope Lodge. They are also participating in three different Relay for Life events across the country. In the months before the trip, they have been cooking dinner for the Baltimore Hope Lodge and connecting with residents.
Riders rely on local donations for lunch and dinner to maximize the amount of money they can give to their two beneficiaries. DiGennaro decided to participate because cancer patients, when faced with this life-threatening disease, tend to make the most of each day.
“By biking across the country, I will also be taking extraordinary measures to make the most of each day in solidarity with the millions of people who have cancer,” she said.
DiGennaro was inspired by her friends who have done the ride and people close to her who have had cancer.
“It’s a universal, nondiscriminatory disease,” she said.
Lai, who has been fortunate enough not to have anyone very close to her suffer from cancer, decided to participate because she wanted to be an active force in the fight against cancer.
“I feel that the 4K allows me to make a more significant contribution,” she said. “I also really wanted to embark on this once in a lifetime opportunity after I graduated.”
You can help DiGennaro and Lai reach their goal by making a donation at the 4K for Cancer Web site.
You can also keep up with the ride by following their blog.