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I'm Alan Jacobsen, long time Fresno cyclist about to embark on a journey across America to raise funds for Valley Children's Hospital. I'm inspired to do this ride to honor my grandson, Isaac Montanez, 10, was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in August 2021 and was treated at Valley Children’s Hospital for 16 months. He is now in remission with continued chemotherapy treatment at home and monthly visits to the Cancer and Blood Disorders Center at Valley Children’s Hospital.
The ride symbolizes Isaac’s journey with the disease from diagnosis to remission. Starting on the West Coast where the sun sets represents the feeling we had when we got the diagnosis. It felt like the sun was setting on Isaac’s life. The journey over the mountains and through the valleys represents cancer treatment's highs and lows. Finally, ending on the East Coast where the sun rises is my metaphor for his new lease on life and a future to look forward to.
Me and Isaac pre-diagnosis.
Me and Isaac Christmas 2021. Four months into treatment.
Isaac post chemo and on the road to remission.
Traveling across the southern states, my trek begins Saturday, February 25 at Huntington Beach, CA, and ends Saturday, March 18 at Jacksonville Beach, FL. The trip will cover more than 2,600 miles and 57,000 feet of climbing.
My purpose for the ride is to raise money for Valley Children’s Hospital’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center. Donations can be made directly at https://www.valleychildrens.org/foundation/cycling-across-america
The fundraiser is my way of giving back to the doctors, nurses, and staff of Valley Children’s Hospital who took such great care of my grandson and the many other children of the Central Valley.
I also share my deepest gratitude to all of the sponsors that have supported the ride thus far, including Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Fresno Area Express, Drake Law Firm, Scratch Labs, We Heart Nutrition, Tower Yoga, REI, Rubber Soul Bicycles, Trek Bicycle Corporation, The Bike Shop @ Woodward, Express Graphics, Kordova x Ms. Limon, Art Mendoza, and Gabee B Creations.
Supplies and Nutrition donated to support the trip by Rubber Soul, The Bike Shop @ Woodward, Trek Bicycles Fresno, REI, and Tower Yoga
I will be posting daily blogs on this site, so please subscribe to the RSS feed to get the daily updates.
I will also be posting daily vlogs on my YouTube channel Alan Rides. Please subscribe and click the notification bell for the daily updates. You can also leave comments and questions in the videos and I will post a video featuring those questions and answers during the trip.
I also want to express my sincerest gratitude to the Fresno Cycling Club and the valley cycling community for their support. It means a great deal to me and my family.
Scott Sehm, Gary Egorov, Dennis Ball and myself at the VCH press conference announcing the ride.
If anyone would like to join me for any part of the ride, feel free to contact me via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org. I will be happy to accept the company along the way.
If anyone would like to join me for the start, I will be leaving at 6:00 am from 22345 E Pacific Coast Hwy, Huntington Beach, CA 92646 on Saturday February 25, 2023. Please meet at 5:45 am as we roll at 6:00 am sharp. The first 60 miles are along the Santa Ana River Trail, so there will be minimal interaction with Los Angeles traffic.
Here is the link to the first day route: https://www.komoot.com/tour/1006663480?share_token=aCtv7EDaOr6wy7djVKwvQi8txmsHi4mqO5IvGJ3CohF8LeZZeQ&ref=wtd
Here is a link to the news story: https://abc30.com/valley-childrens-bike-ride-inspiration-2023-cross-country-trip/12832580/