Family Spotlight: Deanna McCurdy’s Epic Climb for an Epic Cure
Last week I raced the Breck Epic, a 6-day mountain bike stage race high up in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Breck Epic starts and finishes each day in the town of Breckenridge, Colorado (elevation 10,000’) and climbs on rugged single track trails, covering approximately 240 total miles and 40,000’ of elevation gain over the course of the 6 day event. It was the culmination of a journey I began over two years ago: In 2009, I started doing triathlons after my youngest daughter, Hayden, was diagnosed with Angelman syndrome. Hayden has always pushed me to reach new goals--but even I couldn’t have seen this latest one coming.
After Day 1 of the race, I had serious doubts that I would be able to race for 5 more days at such intensity, even with the sacrifices and incredible support from family and friends and months of training leading up to the race. Then I received a text from Maiddy Dunigan, Angel mom to Jaxson and former FAST Board member: “You’re an AS mom, you can do anything.”
Her words reminded me of all the years of fighting, the sleepless nights, the juggling of schedules to squeeze workouts in, the doctors and therapy appointments, and all of the other challenges we parents have to overcome with and for our kids daily. Maiddy reminded me that this race is actually the easy part, something I don’t have to do, but I get to do, an ability and opportunity to show others that we can achieve great things despite our life’s challenges. Plus, I was able to share about Angelman Syndrome with the cycling community and help raise money for FAST through our social media campaign and daily race updates. This newfound perspective helped fuel me to win each stage of the race with my partner, and to take the top step in the overall women’s podium.
#1? I couldn’t believe it myself. But that’s what Hayden has taught me: How limitless the possibilities are, if you let yourself be driven by hope.
To read more about the Breck Epic and the Epic Climb for an Epic Cure, visit the McCurdys' CAN page.
To learn more about FAST Athletes, their mission and inspiring stories, check out our FAST Athletes page.