by Dr. Lori Salierno
On a crisp but sunny afternoon in Vancouver, Washington, a 52-year old woman mounted a bicycle and started a ride along with a several other riders. One mile later, 12 of them were still riding with her as she headed towards Mt. Hood, Oregon. At the end of that day, she said goodbye to the last few riders and embarked on a 3,000 mile journey that would take her across the continental U.S. toward Atlanta, Georgia. Although she had trained for a few weeks, she was uncertain as to whether she would be able to finish or not. But one thing and one thing alone fueled her passion to finish. The lady’s name was Lori Salierno. Her burning passion was her desire to raise awareness for the often forgotten children of this world. Driven to the limits of her physical body, she encountered seemingly insurmountable challenges. While riding 70 to 100 miles per day, she rode through 37 degree weather in Oregon, pedaled by rattlesnakes in the dunes of Idaho, climbed up 12 percent grade roads in Utah and Colorado, lifted her bike over her head in celebration at the top of a 10,276 foot mountain in Colorado, skirted around wildfires in the Rockies, fought 18 mph headwinds in Kansas, got soaked in sweat pushing through 109 degree weather in Missouri, got hit by a car in St. Louis, and maneuvered shoulder-less county roads in the South. Lori shares her dangerous adventure with us in Hope Dangerously. Her story is not about just a bicycle ride but about how we can overcome the challenges and dangers of life with hope, passion, and determination.