By Sharon Sullivan - GJ Free Press
Friday, May 25, 2007
Sixty-three-year-old Marie Nemec, and Charlotte Reicks, who'll be 72 in July, are about to embark on their
ninth long-distance bike ride to raise public awareness and funds for Huntington's Disease research and family
People are invited to a send-off Thursday at 6:30 a.m. at Eagle Rim
Park next to Orchard Mesa Middle School. There will be muffins provided by Homestyle Bakery, and departure will be
at 7:30 a.m. Anyone wanting to ride along for awhile is welcome to bring his/her bike.
This year Nemec and Reicks will be joined on their "Rockies to Plains 2007" bike tour by Sandy Lozier of Nebraska,
and Sherri Kole, of Idaho. The women will arrive June 14, in Oklahoma City for the 22nd annual convention of the Huntington's
Disease Society of America.
Legendary folksinger and Oklahoma native Woody Guthrie died of Huntington's Disease in 1967.
His widow, Marjorie, founded the Committee to Combat Huntington's Disease, which evolved into the Huntington's Disease
Society of America.
Huntington's Disease is a progressively degenerative brain disease, passed from parent
to child through a mutation on the fourth chromosome. Those afflicted eventually lose the ability to walk, think, talk,
reason and swallow.
This year's ride will cross the Continental Divide at 11,312 feet elevation on Monarch
Pass. From there, it's downhill into southeast Colorado and the Oklahoma panhandle.
Neither Nemec nor Reicks has Huntington's Disease in their families. They just share a
commitment to find a cure.
Kole, 51, met Nemec through the on-line Huntington's Disease list. Kole's first husband died
of Huntington's Disease, and their 33-year-old son tested positive for the gene in 2005.
Lozier also met Nemec through the on-line Huntington's Disease list. Her mother is in
the later stages and in a nursing home. Her uncle and brother are affected, and nine other relatives are at risk.
Lozier, 50, tested negative in 2000.
The women are seeking donations to go toward finding a cure and to help families affected by
Huntington's Disease. Huntington's Disease Society of America has a Research Matching Gifts Challenge Fund that will triple
The past eight bicycle rides have raised more than $317,000 for research and family services.
Daily messages will be written during the ride recounting highlights of the trip. To receive a subscription,
e-mail Nemec's husband Ron at email@example.com. The ride can also be tracked on the
Internet at http://www.bikeforthecure.org/.
Donations may be sent to:
Rockies to Plains 2007
3087 - A 1/2 Road
Grand Junction, CO.
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