Last year, in my final days at Saabs United, I wrote about Jim Coggeshall (Coggs), his fight with cancer and his quest to raise funds for cancer research with the Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Massachusetts.
His method of fundraising is via his bicycle and the Pan Mass Challenge. If you’ve been watching the Tour de France this year, like I have, then you’ll be well acquainted with how hard it is for a professional cyclist to ride around 200 kilometers in a day. Really, though, those guys are a bunch of wusses.
The Pan Mass Challenge is a 200 MILE single-day bike ride and let’s just say that Jim’s old enough to play Dad to most of the guys in the TdF. Take that, you precious little Le Tour giblets!
The Pan Mass Challenge attracts thousands of participants each year and the event raised $35million in funds in 2011 alone. The costs for administering the effort are covered by businesses, so every cent raised from private donations goes directly towards research at the Dana Farber Center.
Jim is a five-times Saab owner and three-times cancer survivor. His current stable of cars comprises two Saab 9-5 SportCombis (2001 and 2006), a Saab Sonett III, a classic 900 Convertible and a 9-3 Viggen Convertible in red. Jim participates in Saab events all over the north-east United States and recently had 20 or so cars at his place for what I’ll call a SaaB-B-Q.
This guy is a first class Saab nut.
And speaking of nuts, Jim’s a recent survivor of testicular cancer. As he’s fond of saying –
“I gave my left nut to cancer. What can you give?”
That was 18 months ago. Just this morning, Jim was at Dana Farber getting a checkup and he came out with a clean bill of health. That’s 18 months, cancer free!!!
So if you have any doubts about the genuineness of this appeal, don’t.
Last year, Saabs United and it’s readers contributed over $1,000 of Jim’s $9,000 contribution to the effort. What an outstanding result! It’s an outcome I hope SU can beat this year.
To help us all out, Dan De Vlieger over at State of Nine has agreed to offer a $100 voucher to be raffled amongst contributors. You get one chance in the draw for every $10 you contribute to the cause. $50 in means 5 chances at the prize. All you have to do is make sure you record your name on Jim’s contribution page so that he can allocate the right number of chances for you.
Thanks to Dan at State of Nine for his contribution. Dan’s a class act.
So how do you contribute?
Simply head over to Jim’s PMC entry page and you can make a contribution there. You can also read Jim’s story in his own words.
I know SU people have given a lot in the last 12 months. You’ve given from both your time and your finance and I’m somewhat hesitant to ask you to put your hands in your pockets once again.
This is a fantastic cause, however. Cancer hast most likely touched every person reading this page in one way or another. It took my Dad 27 years ago at the age of just 52. Thankfully, Jim’s family has been spared that pain in respect to him and his work on behalf of the Saab community, and in respect of this event, deserves your consideration.
I’ll finish with another very poignant quote from Jim, last year:
A lot of my Saab friends offered words of encouragment during my battle which were helpful on a personal level. But all the verbal sentiment in the world will not cure a single cancer sufferer. It takes research and reaserch takes money. Consider that 40 years ago somebody with my form of cancer had a 5 year survival rate of just 20%. Today, thanks to research at places like the Dana Farber it’s over 98%. I want everybody to have a similar chance of recovery but that is still not the case with many forms of the disease.
Thanks again to Dan at State of Nine for his support, and thanks in advance for your support, too.