GET TO KNOW RIDE COACH EILEEN MALONEY!
Here is a testimony from Eileen herself:
“I love to ride my bike!
We took our kids to Dr. Bob, who told us of his excellent adventures in Death Valley with JDRF. At that time I recalled that Anne Conroy Noble, my cousin was also riding for JDRF in Death Valley, Dr. Bob encouraged me to ride but it was not the right time for my family. I said that I would one day. Then, as our kids got to middle school. I participated in my first triathlon. Given that, I searched for people to ride with all of the time. The motivating team was the SW Ohio JDRF, who encouraged me to get through 66 miles at the Youngs Ice Cream Charity Bike Tour. Dan Feldkamp, Gerry, Walt, Jeff and the whole team helped cheer me on singing “Come On Eileen,” and pulling me ina double peleton. After a couple of years on this local ride, I decided to ride for team JDRF — due to the spirit of the team. I still trained with my triathlon and running friends, but the contagious fun that team SWOH shared keep me committed.
I did not have any connections to T1D But that year 2015, my son’s friend Michael was diagnosed as a 20 year old college student — and so was their family dog. I decided that I would ride in Death Valley. There are many scary thoughts to this — first, I hate hot weather. I don’t sweat, and a friend who was raised in southern California said it was the scariest place on earth. I had to come up with plans to stay cool, and raise the money. My friend Amy Warner, who had ridden in Tucson and LaCrosse, would help mentor me. She and Gailen Collins and the original Youngs crew rode and rode with me in the hottest Ohio summer. I hosted the Wheel Pastabilities to Cure Diabetes dinner to raise awareness and money. My daughter made wheel cookies, local grocery stores donated just enough to pay for the food. I borrowed decorations, a JDRF fundraising DVD and decorated with a borrowed 4 foot by 4 foot bike painting, paper dye-cut bikes in the JDRF colors and gathered friends to volunteer and come to the dinner. I raised $800 that night.
Enthusiasm grew, miles added up and we had a very hot summer of training. October came. We caught the plane, met new friends and were ready to ride. But the flood of the century came. Our century was shortened to 70 miles, and we crossed the finish line before it reached 90 degrees. That year, Dr. Derek told us of the promising future of CGM monitors and new advances that the funds we raise are now readily available.
I love to ride my bike. And I love to ride for JDRF because I have seen the advancements our funds are making in the lives touched by T1D. The science progress is making a difference for my friends, and all who have T1D. I have made many new friends riding with Team SOCO and work hard to get others involved as riders, advocates, and donors.
I am inspired. I have ridden the Youngs ride every year. This will be my 9th National JDRF! I want to keep JDRF in the local riding scene, and would have loved to join the great team headed to GR this year, but decided to stay back and do Young’s, where I started my love for JDRF SOCO. My National Ride is Amelia Island this year.
See you soon!”
Join Eileen and her efforts to ride to cure diabetes! Learn more at ride.jdrf.org.