Poem from my mother, Louise Spiezle (Peabody Mass)
by Louise Spiezle
As you get ready to go away, I have a few words to say
On the 20th of August you will start one of your lifelong dreams
As you start cycling across the USA seeing many new scenes
Forty-five days later you will arrive in Maine,
Hope the weather will be nice and without rain.
when you finish this trip and head back west
You will have great memories and will need a good rest
At the end you will probably be tired and sore,
But you will have memories and pictures galore.
I am proud of your endeavor and remembering your Dad
But when you are safely home I will be glad
Stay well and enjoy your time away,
I will miss our calls is what I want to say.
Love, good luck and happy riding
I am humbled by the support of not only friends and family, but from strangers who have learned of this endeavor and challenge. As I shared in an interview today, it is not about me, nor the bike, it is about supporting everyone who has been impacted by this disease. I have found may strangers who just need to talk and share their stores, their pain and most importantly their hope for a cure or treatment. Combined this is all the more of an inspiration for my ride.
This ride is run by Trek Travel (part of Trek Cycles). It is fully supported with a mechanic and guides who will provide the encouragement and nourishment to make this a ride of memories and a “Ride for Memories”. To donate visit my fundraising page.
Today I hit the hills climbing close to 4,500 feet over 50 miles in preparation for the trip in just 12 days. During the ride I thought of how Alzheimer took another victim, Glen Campbell at 81. As I pushed myself, some of his classic tunes came to mind pushing me to ride harder. It also reminded be how Alzheimer’s strikes another victim in the US every 66 seconds. Like my father he struggled to maintain a quality of life during the early stages and was with family at the very end finding peace.
In just 20 days I will be dipping my front wheel in the Pacific Ocean and heading towards Portland, Maine. God willing on October 4th I will be doing the same in the Atlantic ocean. Ironically this photo with my father (Franklyn Spiezle) was near Rockport, Massachusetts, only two hours from where I will be finishing my ride.
For over 30 years I have dreamed about making this “trek”. While I was an aspiring (yet never successful) racer with Greggs Cycle, this is a new adventure for me and my family. This trip organized by Trek Bicycles, is fully supported with on-road guides, mechanics and feed zones. 3,815 miles +/- and 150,000 feet, I will ride everyday and hopefully every mile. A ride creating memories and a Ride For Memories!
Ramping up and training over 300 miles a week. Support for Alzheimer’s Association has raised over $4500. Thanks to colleagues at Microsoft, Boeing, Publishers Clearing House, Internet Society, friends and family for their generous support. I also want to thank the board of directors (including past board members) of the Online Trust Alliance for their support and generosity.
Special note of appreciation to the Microsoft Alumni Network for help in spreading the word and the encouragement form the Bellevue Athletic Club. As noted this ride is in memory and tribute to my father and everyone who has been impacted by this disease.