LIVESTRONG is the True Legend!
Okay…we all know that Lance Armstrong is facing a complete and utter wipeout of all the racing awards and, perhaps, all the love of the fans he’s accumulated over the years. Although, on a personal level I must say, just riding in those races and basically almost killing yourself to get to the end deserves awards passed out to everyone who makes the attempt.
Yes, Lance Armstrong is a world champion; he won the Tour de France a record seven consecutive times before leaving cycling for good. He then went through a death defying disease. Now, according to the USADA (U.S. Anti-Doping Agency), the only thing Armstrong should be remembered for is the fact that he utilized performance enhancing drugs in order to accumulate all those championship rides. BUT! The one thing that he should be remembered for and no one should ever forget about, is the fact that the LIVESTRONG Foundation has helped so many. THAT is part of Armstrong’s life and legend that should never be put to the side. It would be a serious miscarriage of justice if people stopped helping and supporting that incredible organization simply because of a personal error in Armstrong’s life.
The headlines are all over the place; everyone is talking about a former US Postal Service Pro Cycling Team employee who ‘states’ that she acted as the assistant to Armstrong (and a masseuse to the team), and said that doping was so prevalent in the 1990s that it was not even recognized at that time as cheating.
The woman who acted as masseuse in 1999, put through evidence to the USADA last week saying that doping was known as, “medical programme.” But it was not just this part of the team who offered up information, it seems that a great many ex-teammates testified, as well.
The USADA report released last Wednesday offers a gross of information about Armstrong that details the fact that winning and doping went “hand in hand” in the cycling world, but that Armstrong was the focal point. Frankly, there are many who see the ex-teammates’ statements as a bit ridiculous, considering they basically say that it was BECAUSE of Armstrong that they took the drugs; that HE wanted them to in order for the team to win. (These are grown men by the way who, most assuredly, had a choice).
Everyone in ‘power’ on this one will do whatever they end up doing, that’s a fact. But what is also a HUGE fact is that LIVESTRONG, the organization Armstrong created, focuses on curing cancer and helping cancer sufferers and their families, and it is the most important work that Lance has ever done. Period!
Here are some facts that SHOULD be remembered at all times:
LIVESTRONG has offered many things from galas to reaching out to underserved populations through the Living After Cancer Treatment brochure series.
LIVESTRONG also established a Young Adult Alliance. Every year, nearly seventy THOUSAND young adults between the ages of 15 and 39 are diagnosed with cancer, and survival rates for this age group have not increased since 1975. The younger survivors often are caught between pediatric and adult oncology and face a variety of long-term effects that will need to be addressed over their lifetimes. And, let‘s face it, with the state of our economy and healthcare – the young do have a more difficult time in front of them considering they will barely be able to find and then afford continuing treatments.
But the LIVESTRONG Young Adult Alliance was formed as a coalition of organizations, included universities and academic medical centers, cancer centers, community hospitals, professional societies, nonprofit/advocacy groups, and liaison members from government agencies such as NCI and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to collectively create an implementation plan to address these issues.
Huge progress has been made since 2006 when it came into being, and attention has been brought to the adolescent and young adult cancer burden. And to help this amazing and much-needed entity become established financially, LIVESTRONG has granted seed money and pledges continued support through the end of 2014.
And this is not ALL that Lance Armstrong, his name and his heart have given to the world. They also assisted survivors affected by Hurricane Katrina.
They provided 100 cancer advocates from all 50 states in Washington, D.C., who participated in more than 120 local events across the country. They have worked hard to urge Congress to make funding for cancer research a national priority.
The LAF has helped the ‘Texans to Cure Cancer’ efforts to mobilize communities across Texas to pass Proposition 15, a constitutional amendment up to $3 billion in state general revenue bonds to fund cancer research, prevention, early detection and control programs. (Proposition 15 is the largest state-level investment in cancer research and prevention ever made.)
A survivorship clinic was opened at the Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas in Austin, Texas.
More than a million brochures have been passed out, as well as bracelets; races, walks and more – all of this combines to raise money and donations for cancer survivors and sufferers.
LIVESTRONG launched a Global Cancer Campaign that traveled around the world, from Australia to Mexico, which culminated in the landmark 2009 LIVESTRONG Global Cancer Summit. This event brought together over 500 world leaders, corporations, non-governmental organizations and advocates who are all still working to reduce the burden of cancer in their own communities.
The incredible work of the Lance Armstrong Foundation goes on and on and on. Lists that are literally books can be shown of ALL the amazing projects and help they have given to survivors of cancer, and the people who are still battling to extend their lives. THIS is what Lance Armstrong should be commended and remembered for.
In the end, whether you are a Lance fan or not – whether you are upset about the ‘wins’ or not – what absolutely MUST be taken care of, supported, believed in and provided for, is LIVESTRONG. And whatever comes of anything else, America needs to remember this!
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Until Next Time, Everybody,