My Two Dreams*** 12.14 Based on our call today it would appear there is insufficient interest to proceed. As you can imagine I am sorry to hear this, but am remembering Eckhart Tolle's admonition, "Whatever is happening is what is supposed to be happening". This idea may not work, but we will find something that does. I don't give up :).M
When I heard "cancer" and my name in the same sentence late one Friday afternoon years ago my first thought was, "Now I won't be able to ride a bicycle across America".
I realize this is a strange first thought. You go a little crazy after news like this (lol). Almost immediately I also thought of my friends and family. Once the fog cleared it was interesting and instructive to examine what I didn't think about.
I didn't think about money, career or accomplishments. What mattered most in that life altering moment was love.
When I asked Dr. van Deventer at the UNC Cancer Center if he could treat me as if making a bicycle ride across America was the most important thing, more important than longevity, he said, "I can do that." Not only could he do it, he timed my first treatments perfectly. I would need to return to chemotherapy within weeks after finishing Martin's Ride To Cure Cancer in the fall of 2010.
Sitting in a chemo chair may be the most contemplative time in your life. About half the time you are asleep, but the other time you are too tired to WORK. Work seems far off anyway. The other time, the floating time, in the chemo chair you think about YOUR LIFE. Chemo reminds you life is not an infinite journey.
After Martin's Ride To Cure Cancer I was tired, worn out and disappointed. Working with Karen Cochran at the Duke Cancer Institute we quickly organized a fund raising effort to support cancer research attached to my lifelong dream of riding a bicycle across America. Sometimes you think you are good at something because you are good at some related thing. Turns out as a cancer research fund raiser I stink (lol).
Our goal was to ride 3,300 miles and raise $50,000 for cancer research. We only achieved ONE of these goals. We road the miles, but topped out at $27,000 for cancer research because I stink as a cancer fund raising guy :). One thing I learned from Martin's Ride is to ALWAYS speak a positive internal language. The minute the voice inside your head goes negative you are lost, you can't go on.
My Second Dream - Tech Cures Cancer
Why did I think so small? I've managed websites that made millions in days. If we could sell millions of dollars of STUFF in days, there had to be a way to use technology to help cure cancer. The Story of Cancer Trust was born in one of those floating moments sitting in a chemo chair, one of those moments between consciousness and unconsciousness sitting in chair at the Duke Cancer Institute.
I also started a positive internal dialogue. I told myself positive things. "You have great, smart friends willing to help," was one idea since Martin's Ride proved that. "You are SMART and can figure out how to raise more money and help more patients," was another idea.
Our first attempt was the Cure Cancer Store. My friends and I are in several thousand dollars on the affiliate store idea before I paused it. Mobile is disrupting our idea. Better to shelve the Cure Cancer Store and come back later when the smoke clears.
We flopped around like a fish out of water for a few months. Then serendipity struck. My UNC oncologist Dr. van Deventer mentioned he didn't receive funding for his genetic super mouse. Dr. V wants to create Mighty Mouse to help cure Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL the cancer I have), breast, lung and prostate cancers. I asked Dr. V how much he needed and the sum wasn't that large.
Surely there is a way we can help Dr. V I remember thinking. Since I work a full 60+ hours a week as Marketing Director for the Raleigh web developers Atlantic BT, I hired Tonia Zamperi to identify the direction we should take. After a brief brainstorm and some intense research we determined crowdfunding was the right new direction and Cure Cancer Starter was born.
Not JUST a crowdfunding platform for cancer researchers, but a crowdfunding platform with community to support cancer patients, their friends and family. We named the project Cure Cancer Starter (after feedback that Cancer Starter was too depressing :) and presented the idea to Eli Jordfald from the UNC Lineberger Cancer Center a few weeks ago.
Eli rocked it and we had a meeting with her great boss Debbie Dilbert before Thanksgiving. These meetings followed on several I'd had with the Martin's Ride To Cure Cancer Team: Karen Cochran from the Duke Cancer Institute and Eric Garrision, CEO of WTE. Just before Thanksgiving Tonia, my boss and Atlantic BT CEO Jon Jordan and me presented the Cure Cancer Starter idea to Debbie Dilbert and her team at UNC.
Debbie is currently the President of the Association of Cancer Centers and she shared the Cure Cancer Starter idea and slides yesterday to an interested group of cancer centers. We will have a conference call on Friday to answer questions , but it looks like we will have more than the 5 cancer centers needed to start the project.
Thank you to my army of amazing friends, to Debbie, Eli and Karen because TOGETHER WE CURE CANCER in our lifetime.
Become A FOM, Help Cure CancerWant to become a FOM (Friend of Martin) and help? Believe me raise your hand and we WILL give you a job, the kind of job that pays in smiles, appreciation and LOVE more than money (lol). Here is how to become a FOM:
Cure Cancer Starter slides on SlideShare: Cure Cancer Starter
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