2009 Pan-Mass Challenge Fundraising Video


Hey. My name is Ornoth and each summer I bike 192 miles in the Pan-Mass Challenge, a charity ride that benefits the Jimmy Fund and Boston’s Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Having ridden it, I can tell you that 192 miles is a long way: it’s more than a million feet; or you could think of it as 12 million inches. Coincidentally 12 million is also the number of new cases of cancer which are diagnosed every year. Imagine what it would be like if you had to write one cancer victim’s name on every single inch of those 192 miles we ride.

This is your average sticky note. It’s three inches on a side, so if you used these to write those names down and lined them up end to end, you’d be putting three names on each one. While you’re doing that, you could also add two more names, to also represent the 7.6 million people who die of cancer each year.

So on this one I’m gonna write the names of three friends I know who’ve had cancer, such as Becky, Nicole, Ken, and two people I know who have died of cancer: my father and his father. That’s one.

On this one I’ll write my friends Scott and Emily and Bryan, plus Julie and Marc. That’s two, and we’ve gone six inches out of 192 miles. You get the idea?

This is a standard pad of stickies. There are 100 sheets in the pad, so by the time you finished this pad you’d have written down 500 names and you’d have gotten about 25 feet down the road.

This is a pack of 12 of those pads. By the time you’d finished laying all 1200 of these notes end to end you’d have written down 6000 names—3600 new cases and 2400 cancer deaths—and you’d’ve gone exactly 100 yards, the length of one football field.

To cover the entire 192 mile route you’d need 3,400 of these packs. That’s enough sticky notes to cover this entire table 8 feet deep in sticky pads, with 5 names on every single sheet. That’s what 12 million new cancer cases and 7.6 million deaths looks like. Every single year.

The odds of your name appearing on one of those sticky notes one of these years is one in three if you’re a woman, and one in two if you’re a man. They’re the same odds faced by your parents, your spouse, your children, and that’s not going to change until we have devoted the resources to do something about it.

That’s why 6000 people ride in the PMC, 3000 people volunteer, 250 companies donate goods & services, and a quarter million people sponsor riders, so that 100 percent of every dollar raised by riders goes directly to cancer research.

That’s why Dr. Edward Benz, the president of the Dana-Farber, has repeatedly said that when they write the book about how cancer was cured, the PMC will be in chapter one. Imagine what it would feel like to be able to say that you were part of the generation that cured cancer.

I know it’s been a very rough year economically, but I hope you’ll take a moment to sponsor my ride. If you can’t give as much as you might, at least give what you can. Just think of how many people it could help. Please go to ornoth.pmcrider.com, and thank you so much for your help.

Donate at ornoth.PMCrider.com

Ornoth’s Cycling Page