As you may have read or surmised, Covid-19 has thown a bit of a wrench into the spokes of the Courage Classic this year. Yet, we remain undaunted and committed to the cause. Here is some information from the Courage Classic page for a look at how this imporant event continues to carry on in the face of the global pandemic:
For more than three decades, thousands of cyclists have come together to conquer mountains and raise more than $50 million for Children’s Hospital Colorado over the years in the annual Courage Classic Bicycle Tour.
This year’s theme is extra special: Courage Can’t Be Stopped
because in the face of adversity, medical challenges, and even a global pandemic...
The courage of the kids, families, and caregivers for whom we “ride” cannot be stopped.
And neither can our committed Courage Classic community.
This year’s distance-based virtual tour format will broaden the possibilities beyond what any of us ever dreamed. While we encourage you to continue to keep the incredible tradition of cycling alive – around the block, in your basement on your Peloton, or out on the trails or roads for the full tour mileage – we know that this will be challenging for some. Whatever challenging activity you choose, set a distance-based goal – and you can ride, spin, run, hike, swim, row, walk or go the distance for children’s health in whatever way you choose to support Children’s Colorado.
To that end, on Saturday, July 18, I plan to honor your generous donations and support by riding a 70+ mile route that includes roughly 3,000 feet in elevation gain -- a northern Front Range Foothils loop starting and ending in Berthoud, CO. The route takes me through Carter Lake, up to Masonville, over Horsetooth Reservoir to Bellevue, and back to Berthoud via Burkhorn Road and S. County Road 29.
On behalf of my family and the innumerable Children's Hospital heart patients past, present, and future, thank you for your support. I hope to do well by you all!
I ride to give hope to Children's Hospital Colorado patients like our daughter Natalie.
Natalie was born February 28, 1999, in Lincoln, Nebraska, and she made quite an entrance. For starters, a prolapsed cord turned a routine delivery into an emergency C-section. Moments later, the doctors discovered a profound heart murmur. It became very apparent that something even more serious was happening. She was quickly transported across town to St. Elizabeth's NICU where they stabilized her before informing us she would need to be transferred right away to Omaha Children's Hospital 50 miles away.
Natalie was born with the genetic birth defect 22q11.2 deletion, otherwise known as DiGeorge Syndrome. She had her first open-heart surgery at 11 days old to repair an interrupted aortic arch type B and two ventricular septal defects (VDS), or holes, in her heart. She spent a month in the hospital and finally came home on her mother's birthday--as great a present as one could ever receive.
Our family moved to Colorado on Thanksgiving Day 2004. Because Natalie's condition required ongoing care and because DiGeorge Syndrome also presented Natalie with other medical challenges like a submucosal cleft palate, aortic stenosis, and leaky valves, we quickly established a relationship with Children's Hospital Colorado. Over the next 15 years, she had her palate issue repaired twice, a stent put in her ascending aorta, and annual appointments to keep tabs on her progress and evaluate her valve situation.
At the age of 20, Natalie had her second (and hopefully final) open heart surgery at Children's Hospital Colorado to repair her pulmonary valve. Natalie's journey will continue (she expects routine pulmonary valve replacements and an eventual aortic valve replacement one day) but future procedures will be performed via transcather. Today, she is a healthy, strong, beautiful young woman with no restrictions...and we are truly grateful.
Riding in the Courage Classic is not only a great personal challenge but also an opportunity to support positive outcomes and healthier futures for children here in Colorado. And to say "thank you" to an organization that has done so much for Natalie and our family. Please consider supporting Children's Hospital Colorado financially by sponsoring me in the Courage Classic.