Friday, October 23, 2009

‘Convoy for a Cure’ – it’s personal

After I finish writing this, I am heading to Willie’s Place in Carl’s Corner, TX, to participate in the first-ever U.S. “Convoy for a Cure” on Oct. 24.

OOIDA Life Member Cindy Stowe (pictured here) of Will’s Point, TX, has been planning the “Cure” convoy for months now, and I can’t wait to see it all come together. It’s for such a great and worthy cause – to raise money for breast cancer research.

Cindy was inspired to host a convoy after reading an article I wrote for Land Line in October 2008 about the first-ever all-female convoy, which was organized by OOIDA member Rachèle Champagne. And believe me, that first story wasn’t just an assignment for me, but a way to deal with – and heal from – my family’s own breast cancer battle.

I stumbled upon Rachèle’s idea to organize the first ever “Convoy for a Cure” to raise money for breast cancer research about a year and a half ago, just a few months after my big sister, Michelle, was diagnosed with breast cancer.

And as anyone knows who has witnessed a family member or friend battle cancer, it is the most helpless feeling in the world.

During this time of helplessness, Rachèle’s idea for a “Cure” convoy gave me hope and a purpose. I could help spread the word about her event. Her initial convoy in 2008 raised more than $15,000 for breast cancer research.

In 2009, Rachèle inspired two other female truckers in Canada to organize convoys in their areas, raising more than $80,000. A total of five convoys have already been planned in Canada for next year.

And I have complete confidence in Cindy that her convoy is going to be amazing, too. After all, I can personally attest that nobody I have spoken to has been able to say no to Cindy once she’s told them what she’s doing and what the money is for. Everyone knows a family member or friend who has battled this disease.

So I will close for now, put on my pink and head out on my big journey to Texas for the convoy. So if you are in the area, come convoy with us; all truckers are welcome. And say hello to Cindy and to Rachèle, the “Cure” convoy founder.

I promise these women will inspire you. Oh, and don’t forget to wear pink!