Went out for a bike ride this morning with my friend, Joe Verdone. We planned to do a decent 47 mile loop through Weston and Concord. About ten miles into the ride, we bumped into a group of four other riders, including an old friend and former colleague Moe Blaustein. They were going a little further than we planned, but they seemed like a good group and invited us to tag along, so tag we did.
What resulted is what Joe and I called our “epic ride.” We covered 60 miles in about four hours. Nothing for that group, but longer than either Joe or I had ever ridden. Another highlight of the ride was learning that this group was part of the Pan Mass Challenge team called Team Kermit. According to the team’s profile:
Team Kermit rides the PMC in honor and memory of our dear son, brother and friend Jared.
Team Kermit was formed in 2005 by Ellen, Adam, Jared and Steven Branfman and their friends while Jared was undergoing treatment at the Jimmy Fund. Steven, Adam and the team rode while Ellen and Jared volunteered. The team is named for Kermit the Frog of Sesame Street fame. Kermit was one of Jared’s favorite childhood characters and represents the ability that people have to rise above the ordinary in order to achieve great results. Kermit’s theme “It’s not easy being green” became Jared’s mantra and helped him endure and even laugh through the often grueling treatments. Jared was the epitome of determination, resolve, dedication, bravery, and passion. Kermit inspired Jared and reminded him and all of us that we are limited only by our own dreams and desires. Later that year Jared passed away after a 2 1/2 year battle with the disease. He was 23 years old.
It was also inspiring to ride with Adam Branfman, who has been a professional cyclist for the past two years. Learn more about Adam at his blog, The Branfman and read his biography as a member of the Prof Development A-Team for Independent Fabrication Racing.
If you’re interested in riding with Adam and Steven, they go out for rides one or two times per day and Steven emails a list of 50+ people inviting them to join every day. It’s great fun!