Dylan McMurrer is a senior at The College of New Jersey. In the summer of 2018, he will be traveling with a group of college-aged students on a 70-day, 4000+ mile ride from Baltimore, MD to Seattle, WA, raising money and awareness for the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults.
What is your connection to the cancer community?
Since a young age I have been connected to the cancer community. When I was around 9 years old, my friend's dad died of cancer. My siblings and I were always at his house playing with his daughter and he would always have snacks for us and ask us how we were doing. He was one of the most selfless people I have ever met. When he died I did not really understand what cancer was, but I understood that it was some kind of bad disease. Due to this, as I got older I started to participate in events to help raise money for cancer research.
The main event that I did every year for 6 years was Relay For Life. One of my friends on my middle school and high school cross country team was a cancer survivor and she always made a team for Relay For Life. During the event myself and one other friend would walk the whole 12 hours. We walked the whole time to show that we will walk with the survivors and those who are still fighting cancer through all the hardships that they will and have endured. Participating in Relay For Life throughout middle school and high school was a growing experience for me, but I didn't truly understand how cancer can affect someone and their family until this past year.
In April of 2016 my dad was diagnosed with cancer. The thought of losing someone so close to me, that has been there for every important moment of my life so far, is terrifying. During this time I began to understand the impacts that cancer can have. I saw my dad begin to lose his health, especially during the later stages of his Chemotherapy. He began to sleep more and some days it was hard for him to get out of bed. In the later stages of Chemotherapy my dad had to be hospitalized for 3 days due to a blood clot that was caused from his port. It was also a tough time for our family, effecting each one of us in a different way.
Thank God that my dad is doing much better now and has been cancer free for over a year. But this experience has taught me how devastating cancer truly can be. No one should ever have to go through this. I want to participate in this ride to do my part in ensuring that families will no longer be torn apart by this awful disease.
Why are you traveling over 4000 miles this summer with the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults?
I want to be a 4K rider so that I can pay it forward. I learned when my dad was diagnosed with cancer that it takes a community to overcome cancer. My family would not have been able to cope with my dad's cancer like we did without the support of our commuinty. We have a family friend that works at the Cancer Institute at Rutgers University in New Jersey. She came over and helped to advise us on how to cope and overcome the hardships of cancer. We also had family friends make us meals when my mom had to take my dad to get his treatment. All of these actions that people in our community took to help us makes me want to repay them by helping other families in similar situations. I know that if I am a part of the 4K team, I will be able to help others like my family has been helped through the awarding of the scholarships, bone marrow drives, hospital visits with families, and community dinners. I want to help families overcome this terrible disease by creating a community that allows them to do so.
2018 marks the 17th year of the 4K for Cancer sending young adults on journeys across the country in an effort to inspire hope and unite communities in the fight against cancer. The 4K for Cancer is a program of The Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults (UCF). Interested in joining the fight? Apply to be a rider or runner a at www.4kforcancer.org!
Over 70,000 young adults are diagnosed with cancer every year. Young adults (ages 15-39) face a variety of unique challenges with a cancer diagnosis including fertility preservation, social isolation, lack of insurance, delayed diagnosis, and more.
The Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults changes lives by creating a community of support for young adults, and their loved ones, impacted by cancer. With your support, the Ulman Cancer Fund is able to provide free support services and resources for the young adult cancer community including:
Cancer to 5K - a 12-week training program designed to introduce or reintroduce cancer survivors to physical activity.
Patient Navigation - a free program (onsite at cancer centers and remotely through our office) that ensures no young adult ever faces cancer alone. We provide one-on-one support & resources to young adults and their families to help them manage the cancer experience and long-term cancer survival.
Scholarships - a financial assistance program to help young adults continue their education after being affected by cancer through their own diagnosis or the diagnosis of a loved one.
UCF House - This year UCF broke ground on a “home away from home” to provide free housing for young adult cancer patients, and their caregivers, in East Baltimore.
Your donation will help make these programs and our mission possible!
|Rob Pierpont||11/23/2017||$25.00||Let me know if you are riding through Colorado and need a place to stay||Gerda Petrescu||11/21/2017||$100.00||Much success! Love Omi.||Laura Chapman||11/21/2017||$100.00||Way to go Dylan! Hope you have an amazing experience on your ride.||Austin Johnson||11/20/2017||$68.78||Enjoy every moment. Team Seattle 2017||Michael & Elena Kopin||11/19/2017||$100.00||What a worthy cause! We know you have the determination and physical ability to do this. Be safe!||Mike Reidy||11/18/2017||$100.00||David & Dale Jack||11/17/2017||$100.00||All the best! What a wonderful thing to do||Mihai Petrescu||11/16/2017||$55.00||Awesome adventure for an awesome cause! Good luck, and share some pictures!||Constantin Petrescu||11/16/2017||$55.00||Great cause Dylan! Good luck and enjoy the adventure!||Ed Seed||11/16/2017||$100.00||Great cause Dylan. Good luck. Ed and Deb Seed||Diane Sulimirski||11/15/2017||$50.00||Fantastic, Dylan! We're cheering you onward with 4,000+ good wishes!||Linda Wonneberger Benanti||11/15/2017||$50.00||Well Done!!! Safe travels and we will keep you all in our prayers.||Colleen Lazarus||11/14/2017||$50.00||God Speed Dylan!||Caitlin Mannion||11/14/2017||$50.00||Good luck!||Jon Petrescu||11/14/2017||$100.00||Great cause. Great way to share the cause. Great way to see the country. Great way to meet new people.||Allan Bensky||11/14/2017||$25.00||Dylan It is no surprise that you are volunteering for a great cause. Good luck in your ride!||Mihaela Kubasta||11/14/2017||$10.00||Big hugs to you and the family! Xo Maisie & Mihaela||Barb Hale||11/14/2017||$250.00||Wow! This is beyond terrific, so bold, and a huge gift. Have an excellent ride Dylan!||Lauren Canning||11/14/2017||$50.00||Great work Dylan and best of luck on this journey! The Canning's||Greg Budd||11/14/2017||$25.00||Good Luck Dylan! You're going to crush it!||Katherine Nanke-Porco||11/14/2017||$100.00||Have a safe journey Dylan. Best of luck, Katy & Gianni Porco||Alexander Moskal||11/14/2017||$50.00||Good luck McMurrer! Keep doing what you're doing you stud!||Dillon Yasser||11/14/2017||$20.00||Making me proud to be a Dillon with long blonde hair, keep doing what you're doing!||Heather Bruns||11/14/2017||$50.00||Good luck! Enjoy the great adventure for a great cause! Heather, Kevin, Robert & Rylie||Diana Friedman||11/13/2017||$10.00||Really proud of you Dylan! Sending hugs to you and your family.||Jody Ketcham||11/13/2017||$100.00||Have a great ride Dylan.||Nancy Bosch||11/13/2017||$100.00||Good Luck Dylan! It’s a CRAZY thing to do, but it’s a great cause and you are obviously doing it for the right reasons.||Betty MacDonald||11/13/2017||$150.00||What a great effort! So proud of you.||Thomas Hannigan||11/13/2017||$100.00||Good luck Dylan!||Pierpont Family||11/13/2017||$100.00||Enjoy our beautiful country||Thomas McMurrer||11/12/2017||$50.00||It's a great cause Dylan, good luck with your fundraising! Uncle Tom, Julia & Jack||Andrea Dunchus||11/12/2017||$25.00||So glad your Dad is still doing well. Good luck with your cause!!||Dorothy McMurrer||11/11/2017||$100.00||We are so very proud of you Dylan!. Your story is very inspiring. Best wishes for a successful trip.||Gerald McMurrer||11/08/2017||$250.00||Good Luck!||Dylan McMurrer||11/07/2017||$100.00|