Why I PMC - Jessica Otto

Bill Alfano's picture
Bill Alfano

Why I PMC - Jessica Otto

Guest blog by Jessica Otto

My dad Peter has ridden in 6 rides so far. I have ridden in 2. Unfortunately, this is the first year I will be doing the ride without him. He was diagnosed with his 4th bout of cancer today (on original submission date). There are lymphoma spots in chest and in his kidneys. What we once though was a benign tumor on his sciatic nerve, is now cancerous. He will start chemo next week and will later receive a stem cell transplant. He was also diagnosed with Parkinson's in the summer of 2014 (caused by a previous brain tumor) and it has only gotten worse. We're not sure if he will ever be able to ride again and he has been out of work for four months now. He is kind hearted and will always put his family and friends before himself. Four rounds of cancer along with Parkinson's...and he's still smiling and laughing through the pain every single day. He is and always will be the reason I ride. He is my hero.

I don't tell his story so people will feel sorry for him or pity him. I tell his story to raise awareness. I tell his story so everyone knows about this wonderful cause and so everyone knows just how much Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) has done not only for my father, but for my entire family. DFCI has changed our lives and I want to make sure the world knows just how truly amazing the PMC and Dana Farber is. They give me hope. I have hope that he will be cured for a fourth time. I will never give up on that.