Thank you so much for nominating me as a Member in Focus! I’ve been with the Freewheelers since the summer of 2008. I’m currently on sabbatical from the group because I took a job assignment in Arizona for a few years. I’ve been staying in touch with the group by acting as the B+/B ride list coordinator, which I really enjoy. Thanks to everyone who works with me to get the ride list ready each month.
I have been riding recreationally since I was young. I rode a hybrid Trek to and from work when I was in high school & in college to get to classes. When I started my professional career, my cycling efforts moved indoors and I became a SPIN instructor for a few years.
I found the Freewheelers during one of the darkest times of my life. I was going through some very difficult personal and professional struggles and I found myself feeling rather alone. I was having a tune-up done in Halters and saw a posting for the Freewheelers. I rode a few B rides with various leaders and enjoyed it. And then I found the Cranbury B ride and the two people who lifted me out of the doldrums – Ira Saltiel and Don Sprague.
If you’ve never ridden with Ira or Don, I highly recommend them. The Freewheelers is a big organization, but Ira and Don made me feel like a friend after the first rides. They encouraged me and taught me how to be a good group rider. I never felt alone on their rides. Ira would let the faster riders go ahead while he talked about family, life, and fun happenings around town. Among other good rides, Don leads a century to Belmar every August that was a life changing experience for me. Once you accomplish a century, you feel ready for anything, and I did the MS City to Shore ride for the first time that year on the heels of that Belmar ride. If I am a member in focus, it’s because of Ira and Don. Without them, I’m not sure how I’d have gotten through that time in my life.
Now, life is pretty different. I’m with my husband and 8-month old son Graham in Arizona. We are looking forward to when he is old enough for his first trike. It’s my hope that he loves his bike as much as I have, and he that gets to ride with the Freewheelers someday!