"Latest Word": Martin Philips and TGL featured in Cannondale newsletter Monday, April 18, 2005
Race Across America: The Gift Of Life Through The Love Of Cycling
Martin Phillips, a passionate cyclist for more than 25 years, has developed a new, and perhaps more important passion: he's trying to save lives. As a member of an "elite" race team, Martin will be racing his Cannondale Six13 in this year's Race Across America (RAAM). While this is a race, Martin and his three other teammates in Team Give Life will be also riding for a cause. As they put it, "We're racing across America so blood and organ donor programs don't have to race against time."
On June 21, 2005, Team Give Life (Bruce Deming, Lou Lamoureux and William Vosseller and Martin Phillips) will line up in San Diego, CA with approximately 20 other teams and begin a single-stage, trans-continental race that ends in Atlantic City, NJ. Unlike the Tour-De France, there are no stages or designated rest stops in the RAAM. The race is live from beginning to end, with Martin and his teammates switching off every hour or so as they race 24x7 for some 3,047 miles. Crossing 14 states and three mountain ranges with over 110,000 feet of climbing, the RAAM is considered by many to be the toughest endurance cycling event in the world.
Aside from its competitive goal of finishing the race in 6 days, Team Give Life is dedicated to raising money and awareness for the cause of blood and organ donation. One of Martin's team members, Lou Lamoureux, is himself a kidney transplant survivor, and will be the first organ transplant recipient to compete in the 24-year history of the RAAM. All contributions to the team's campaign will go to benefit The Give Life Foundation, which exists to promote greater participation in blood and organ donor programs throughout the United States. "This is a great cause because we already have the cure, and the cure is awareness," said Phillips. "By encouraging more people to sign up as organ donors, we all benefit."
The team is accepting contributions to the Give Life Foundation at their website, www.teamgivelife.org, and asks that you consider becoming a blood or organ donor. We at Cannondale encourage everyone to learn more about these important issues and to support Martin Phillips and his teammates as they compete in this year's Race Across America. Good luck Team Give Life! We're very proud to sponsor your efforts. View full story at Cannondale.com
"Team Spotlight -- Team Give Life featuring Lou Lamoureux" in Issue 4 of the RAAM Newsletter Wednesday, April 06, 2005
As one of several teams riding for charity in this year's RAAM, four-man team Give Life seeks to raise $100,000 in order to increase awareness of the chronic shortage of the U.S. blood supply and encourage the donation of blood, blood products, organs and tissues. Yet unlike some of the other teams, Give Life is bringing their cause along for the ride...literally.
While still in high school, Lou Lamoureux was diagnosed with glomerulonephritishis, a type of disease resulting in eventual kidney failure. When his kidneys ultimately failed him, Lamoureux spent every other day in a dialysis clinic as his weakened body struggled against the forces of time and nature.
"During the two or three years leading up to my transplant, I was feeling run down all the time and I had no energy," said Lamoureux. "I was only able to get through the day with medication that helped prop my hematocrit up."
But Lamoureux is one of the lucky ones. His mother, Donna, gave her kidney to her son in in September 2000 and his recovery has been a story of personal triumph.
"Once I received my mother's kidney, my hematocrit shot up to a normal range and I felt like SUPERMAN. I could do anything. I had the energy of 10 people. The only problem was I was restricted to my house. I was immunosuppressed and my doctor didn't want me catching anything from the public. That's when I saw RAAM for the first time on OLN. RAAM was freedom, it was distance, it was epic and I swore to myself I would race in it."
Since receiving his transplant, Lamoureux has won gold medals in the 2002 U.S. Transplant Games and earned top-ten finishes in the 2003 World Transplant Games in Nancy, France.
Lamoureux joins Bruce Deming, William Vosseller, and Martin Phillips in this year's RAAM to bring attention to the 87,000 Americans waiting for organ transplants from a meager 11,000 donors (data from the first nine months of 2004). View Full Newsletter