HINGHAM (CBS) – The 2020 Pan-Mass Challenge won’t have the annual big group ride this summer because of the coronavirus pandemic, but a father and his sons in Hingham are determined to raise money for cancer research with their own reimagined ride.
“I am a PMC lifer until I can’t ride anymore,” said George Danis, who is training for his tenth PMC ride. “As an individual you’re a part of something that’s much bigger than any one person.”
George will have some company for this year’s PMC.
On Christmas Day his son Robert gave him a letter saying he’s riding as well to honor his dad’s 10th anniversary.
“Very emotional, teared up and it was just a heart warming feeling that he felt that he wanted to join in the ride and give back and it was just a great feeling,” George told WBZ-TV.
Robert is the reason George started riding back in 2010.
At age 15, he was diagnosed with lymphoma and became a patient at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
“It was obviously very difficult, but what I always tell people is that the care and the people there couldn’t have been nicer,” said Robert Danis.
In 2010 and 2011, George’s team adopted Robert as their pedal partner and for the last decade the first weekend of August has been all about the PMC.
Robert is now in remission and feels great, which is why he is raising money for an organization that saved his life.
“I think also just remembering the other patients that I met as I was going through my treatment definitely serving as motivation cause unfortunately not everyone is as healthy as I am at this point,” Robert told WBZ.
Robert’s brother Joe is also riding, forming a trio of father and sons. With this year’s PMC is being adjusted because of the coronavirus, they’ll map out their own hundred-mile route.
“Hopefully at some point I’ll get to ten like my dad and hopefully when I’m at ten he’s at 20 so we continue doing it as a family,” Robert said.
Every rider-raised dollar from the PMC goes directly to Dana-Farber.
If you’d like to learn more or make a donation to George’s ride, visit his fundraising page.
Join us on WBZ-TV and CBSBoston.com Friday, July 31st at 7 p.m. for PMC 2020.