#WhyIPMC guest blog by Tina Theroux, first year PMC rider
Cancer. It’s one hell of a killer. I realized that early on in my career as a dentist. In school we were taught about it, how to screen for it in the mouth and how it was treated. Having been one of the lucky ones that had not had a loved one diagnosed by that time, it was just another disease that I needed to know about. And then I began practicing…and this disease became very impactful as I watched patients that I genuinely cared about deal with the devastation of being diagnosed and subsequently treated; sometimes I watched their lives be altered forever as one of their loved ones succumbed to this horrible disease. And then it got a even more personal when one of my best friends from dental school was diagnosed with lymphoma, my grandfather with prostate cancer, my business parter with brain cancer, another dear friend also with brain cancer all within a few years. It’s become quite obvious that no one person doesn’t know of someone afflicted…and that really isn’t fair. However, with all of this, I’ve come to realize that cancer doesn’t have to be a killer and how we treat it has changed drastically in the recent past. Targeted gene therapy and immunotherapies have revolutionized the way we think of treatment. That’s where Dana-Farber comes in.
Realizing that through my love for bike riding I could help make a difference, I decided that the Pan-Mass Challenge was my opportunity to help science continue to find cures. My husband had done his part to help support Dana-Farber in 2013 and 2014 by raising over $35,000 dollars when he ran the Boston Marathon. Now it’s my turn. I’m hoping to raise as much money as I can so that cancer isn’t the killer it once was, so that every person that gets that diagnosis feels that there is hope, so that no parent loses a child to this disease, no spouse is left alone at a young age, no child goes without a parent and nobody feels the devastation of loss of a loved one. I’m riding for my friends and my patients and I’m hoping that my tiny part will help make a huge difference. No dollar amount is trivial—it all adds up…hopefully to a cure.