Warriors climb Libby Hill to raise money for cancer research

Posted at 7:21 PM, Sep 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-23 21:18:48-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Bikers from all over the state, known as Amy's Army of Cancer Warriors, climbed Libby Hill to help raise money for cancer research Sunday.

Despite the rain, people came out in force in the fight against cancer for a battle that many said was a personal one.

Amy Williams, President of Amy's Army of Cancer Warriors, and a cancer survivor herself, said she spearheaded the event to unite survivors and bring forth change. She said the money raised from the event will go to the Massey Cancer Center.

Dorothy Erlanger, who works alongside Williams, said she's used to adversity. Born with a birth defect, she said she has overcome obstacles all her life.

"I have a birth defect, but I swim in spite of that," said Erlanger.

But she said the biggest obstacle she's had to face was learning that she had an advanced form of Ovarian Cancer 17 years ago.

"I'd say 80-percent of my cohort, diagnosed same stage/same time, they're not here. So I need to speak for them," she said.

Others at Sunday's event had similar stories.

Seven-year-old Valentin Speck was diagnosed with Leukemia at just two years old. His parents, Oliver and Margaret, said after two years of initial treatment, his cancer came back one year ago.

"As a parent you just feel helpless because you would love to just take this terrible burden off your child and be the one -- but you're not," said Margaret.

But with the toughest part of the treatment behind him, Valentin will be able to do things he couldn't before.

"I'm going to school in a week," said Valentin.

His mother said these events let them know they're not alone.

"Realize so many other people are going through this too," she said.

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