Dartmouth cyclists to ride for a cure in 2018 Pan-Mass Challenge
James Coggeshall will compete in his eighth consecutive ride in the Pan-Mass Challenge from August 4-5. Surprisingly, he said that makes him about average.
“I’ve always been a cyclist, since I was a teenager,” he said. “This is a way for my love of cycling to be helpful to others.”
The Dartmouth resident is a four time cancer survivor. His first ride was in 2010, after he was treated for testicular cancer at the Dana-Farber Center. In 2012, he was first diagnosed as having prostate cancer. He received diagnoses of skin cancer in 2011 and 2013, and was treated for prostate cancer in 2013. He has not had a recurrence since. Every year, he has been one of the Challenge's "Living Proof" riders.
Coggeshall loves one of the Pan Mass Challenge’s slogans: “Commit: You’ll figure it out.”
He says that is what cancer forces you to do, and it’s a motto that applies to the cycling route, too. As always, he will be riding the full length from Sturbridge to Provincetown. In past years, he has even traveled to the New York border to ride the full length of the state.
“It’s an amazing event,” Coggeshall said. “Unlike a lot of charities, every single penny donated to a rider goes to the Dana-Farber Institute.”
Jimmy DiPasqua, also of Dartmouth, will be riding for the 16th time. He first rode the Pan-Mass Challenge in 2002 when a friend of his mother’s passed away from cancer. He said the ride became even more personal when his mother was diagnosed with cancer in 2004, before passing away in 2011.
“That’s why I ride now, more specifically for my mother,” he said.
DiPasqua said he wasn’t much of a cyclist before he started the Pan-Mass Challenge, but now he cycles throughout the year.
“Once I started doing it, I was pretty much hooked,” he explained.
This year, the challenge will be a little more difficult because he has a newborn baby, but he will still be doing the full ride from Sturbridge to Provincetown over the two days of the challenge. He will ride with Team Lung Strong, as he has for the past six years. The funds raised by this team are restricted to the Lowe Center of Thoracic Research.
The riders are still accepting donations, and will be until October 1.