VERMILLION, S.D. -- University of South Dakota School of Law senior secretary and USD alumna Christina Schroeder spent 70 days this past summer on a 4,000-mile bicycle trek from Baltimore to San Diego.
She took part in the 4K for Cancer, a project of The Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults that works at a grassroots level to support, educate, connect and empower young adult cancer survivors.
Schroeder, who received bachelor degrees from USD in biology and Spanish, applied to 4K for Cancer, was interviewed and became a rider on team San Diego. She and her fellow riders ceremoniously dipped their bicycle tires into the water at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor on June 5 and finished on Aug. 13 when they reached the waves and sparkling sand at Mission Beach, San Diego.
The trek took her across the Appalachian Mountains, the Ozarks, the Colorado Rockies, South Lake Tahoe and the Pacific Coast of Southern California.
“Even when your legs feel like Jell-O, you have to make it up there and overcome your next mountain. You do it as a team. You remember all those dedications (people who were affected by cancer). They kept us going. Each day we would write their names on our legs,” Schroeder said.
Schroeder said there were 10 days when the team stopped to do community service, meet with families affected by cancer and actually rest. She said she wasn’t a serious cyclist before the trip but simply a person of passion.
“Being a rider with the 4K is not solely about the miles nor the fight against cancer,” Schroeder said. “It is about connecting the individuals who are affected and creating a web of strength for those who need it. It’s about raising awareness of the young adult cancer issue, and to ensure all young adults and families impacted by cancer have a voice and the resources necessary to thrive.”