by Jen Hogan
The Pan Mass Challenge is a 2 day, nearly 200-mile bicycle ride across Massachusetts, from Sturbridge to Provincetown. It raises funds for Dana Farber Cancer Institute to provide cancer research and treatment. 100% of fundraising goes to DFCI. I ride for the Patriots Platelet Pedalers, the largest team in the PMC. Our funds go to Dr. Ken Anderson, a world-renown doctor specializing in the area of Multiple Myeloma, his research also benefits many other types of cancer.
Why do I PMC?
2020 marks 10 years riding in the Pan Mass Challenge, 9 with my daughter, Brigit Martina. Raising funds and contributing to cancer research and treatment has always been important to me. When I began riding I knew many friends who had been treated for cancer, several had passed away. This ride had passed by my Mom’s house for many years and finally I decided to stop watching and become part of it. The physical challenge of this ride combined with helping the fight to cure cancer was appealing.
Once I began riding with Brigit there was no turning back, we loved riding together, spending hours training together and of course fundraising in a variety of ways. We have sent letters, put coin jars in businesses, held an annual fundraiser at Naples Pizza and this year are excited to partner with Imagine Float!
Five years ago riding became personal. In a span of 3 weeks my husband was diagnosed with prostate cancer and my sister with throat cancer. They began treatment within weeks of each other. Jeff has been cancer free since November 2015. My sister, Jayne Sully, continues to fight. She has endured radiation, life-changing surgery and chemotherapy. Her throat cancer remains in remission but she has had a tumor in her abdomen and currently has incurable liver cancer. She undergoes chemotherapy every 3 weeks and lives with various side effects. She is a strong, brave, fighter. A true warrior.
Riding in the PMC has become part of who I am. I identify as a “PMC Rider.” As long as I am capable I will continue to ride, to show support to those I love, to remember those I have lost and to raise funds for a cure.
My husband, Jeff, has ridden several times including twice since his own cancer diagnosis. My son, Conor, will ride in his second PMC this year along with Brigit and me. It has truly become a family event. We are supported by Brigit’s husband, Garvin and Conor’s wife, Larissa and their two children Cormick and Fiona. We are a family team, we are #HOGANSTRONG #SULLYSTRONG