Rita Reeve knows firsthand how cancer can impact a family.
Her sister-in-law was diagnosed with throat cancer, her three-year-old niece is currently undergoing treatment for brain cancer, and she also lost a brother to colon cancer.
To honour them all, Reeve, of Ainsworth Crescent, near Shell Road and Steveston Highway, is taking part in the 11th Annual Glotman Simpson Cypress Challenge on Sunday, Aug. 12, where she will trek up Cypress Mountain along with hundreds of other cyclists.
The event benefits the BC Cancer Foundation and pancreatic cancer research taking place at BC Cancer.
Since 2008, the challenge has raised over $2.5 million towards finding solutions and enabling experts to better understand and treat pancreatic cancer, providing hope to families across the province facing the disease.
“We are obviously struggling with cancer across our family,” said Reeve.
“Although it’s not pancreatic in particular, I want to do what I can to contribute to cancer research and that has motivated me to take on this event and dedicate my efforts to them.”
Reeve is also looking at the event as a personal challenge, and said the day itself brings people together who share the common bond of a cancer connection.
“You hear other people’s stories and share camaraderie at an event like this,” added Reeve.
“The emotions flow and people come together for a good cause.”
Nearly 800 British Columbians will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer this year; 75 per cent of these patients won’t survive the first year, and less than 10 per cent will survive five years.
Learn more about the event online CypressChallenge.com