Thursday, June 18, 2015

Sam Fox, a Parkinson’s Odyssey

The bond between mother and child is unique and powerful. Mothers bring us into the world, they pick us up when we fall, and wipe the tears away when we cry. We always know everything will be okay because our mothers told us it would be. Their hugs are the armor that protects us. Their smile is the light in our day.

What would you do for your mother? What extreme would you go to? Would you climb the highest peaks or journey thousands of miles to help her if she needed you? I met someone who is doing just that. Sam Fox (no relation to Michael J. Fox) is an extreme athlete whose mother was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease more than 10 years ago. Sam who works for the Fox Foundation has begun his journey, Tour de Fox, which would be described in Greek literature as an epic odyssey. He will ride his bike 14,000 miles to each and every state in the U.S. and climb the highest peak in that state with a goal to raise 1 million dollars for Parkinson’s disease research to help find a cure.

My wife and I attended the Team Fox Young Professionals event this past Monday in Washington, DC, and met this dynamic young man. Standing well over 6 feet tall with long blond hair and beard, he looked every bit the extreme athlete. The most dynamic thing about Sam was how personable and kind he was to everyone. He is a rare person who pushes his body’s ability to move to its limits so people with Parkinson’s will never be limited in how their bodies can move. Sam is a true champion to our cause giving us hope that one day there will be a cure.
It was wonderful to meet so many people from the Michael J. Fox Foundation who work so hard to help all of us who are fighting Parkinson’s.

Leading up to this event, I was inspired by a photo of Sam and loved how it captured the movement of an athlete running.  I created my version of a Warhol print of this photo and presented it to him.

No piece of art or word I write could do justice to this incredible feat Sam has undertaken. 

I am Pat Younts and I Move to Live.

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