Live Strong for Lance

Tuesday, July 27, 2004Lance Armstrong‘s resounding, record-setting sixth Tour de France victory a few days ago was yet another demonstration of this man’s fortitude and resolve.  I mean, think about it.  His exploits in the saddle are near miraculous, given the fact that just eight years ago, he was far from riding high, confronted by a formidable foe not even he could be expected to be ready for: cancer.  But to say Lance has survived the disease would be an understatement.  He has thrived since his diagnosis, both on and off his bike, establishing himself as one of the top cyclists in the world – ever – and speaking up on behalf of cancer prevention and survivorship as founder of the Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF). 

Of course, if anyone has an inspirational message to deliver, it’s Lance, which is just what he did last week in France as a Tour winner yet again, but also in an impeccably timed – and wonderfully crafted – direct mail fundraising appeal I received from his eponymously named foundation.  Talk about striking while the iron’s hot!  Just several days before he was crowned victor once more on the Avenue des Champs-Elysees, he was inviting LAF donors and prospects like me to “help spread the LIVE STRONG message of hope in the fight against cancer!” 

In a surprisingly succinct, albeit convincing, message, the 32-year-old champion wrote, “To raise funds for the LAF’s work, and to carry our message of hope further, we’ve launched an exciting campaign to distribute yellow wristbands bearing our motto, LIVE STRONG.  I’ll be wearing mine as I ride this summer, and I hope you’ll see thousands of spectators along the way wearing them too.  Ultimately, we want five million people worldwide to wear LIVE STRONG yellow wristbands.” 

That’s a lot of wristbands, sure, but you won’t find me betting against Lance.  No way.  After all, if anyone can turn an impossible dream into a reality, it’s him.

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