In the early morning hours of July 26, more than 1,000 women will mass in South Portland to participate in the 8th Annual “Tri for a Cure” Fundraiser for the Maine Cancer Foundation—Maine’s only all-women triathlon. Among the participants will be KMA’s Lynne Gawtry, who is participating in the event for the fourth time.
Lynne was diagnosed with colorectal cancer in 2011 and was finishing treatment in March of the following year when a friend asked her to join the Tri for a Cure effort. Weak and weary from various treatments, and more than a year removed from having walked (let alone run) a mile, Lynne agreed to participate with a team of other women so long as they agreed to go into it with the idea that “we weren’t going to win it; we were just going to do it!”
“We called ourselves the Mountain Valley Wives because all of our husbands graduated from Mountain Valley in Maine,” explains Lynne. “It was an amazing experience . . . and I’ve been participating ever since!”
Lynne will handle the running and swimming portions of the triathlon this year, with another member of the Mountain Valley Wives doing the biking leg of the USAT-sanctioned 1/3 mile swim, 15-mile bike, and 3-mile running course that runs along the shores of Cape Elizabeth and South Portland.
Tri for a Cure was founded in 2008 by Julie Marchese and Abby Bliss. Now in its eighth year, Tri for a Cure has become the largest triathlon in the State and a unique opportunity for Mainers to engage in the fight against cancer as athletes, fundraisers, volunteers, or sponsors.
“Every year is different, but I always leave with a strong sense of gratitude and celebration,” says Lynne. “The cancer journey is very personal and at times isolating, but regardless of how you’ve been touched by cancer—whether it’s you, a friend, family member, or colleague—this is an opportunity to join together and show solidarity, and it’s a great way to celebrate courage, joy, and hope for people at all stages of life!”
To help Lynne in her efforts to support the Maine Cancer Foundation, visit Lynne’s personal web page at the Tri for a Cure website.
The race begins at 7:30 am, with registration activities and ceremonies commencing as early as 5:00 am. For parking information and a list of events leading up to and including race day, visit the Tri for a Cure events page on their website.