Cyclists Travel Through Nine Towns And Over Three Bridges To Fight MS - National Multiple Sclerosis Society

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The Connecticut Chapter strives to provide knowledge and assistance to help people with MS and their families maintain the highest possible quality of life. These goals are achieved through vital national and local programs.

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Cyclists Travel Through Nine Towns And Over Three Bridges To Fight MS

September 12, 2013

This year’s Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, presented by Cashman + Katz, attracted more than 240 participants, spectators and volunteers. Cyclists traveled through nine towns and over three bridges, the Founders, Arrigoni and Charter Oak, to raise, to date, almost $80,000. Fundraising continues through Monday, Sept. 30. For more information on Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, presented by Cashman + Katz or to donate, visit www.ctfightsMS.org.

Rusconi 2013
Peter Rusconi and his wife, Kiara, cut the ribbon at the start of the 2013 Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Rusconi, a resident  ofGlastonbury, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2004. Owner of Cardio Express Fitness Centers, Rusconi and his business teamed up with the National MS Society the next year to sponsor Bike MS in Hartford. His team boasts 115 members, comprised of Cardio Express staff, clients and vendors. Cardio Express Fitness Centers are located in Mansfield, Tolland, Vernon, Manchester, Wethersfield, Southington and soon, East Hartford. To date, the team is more than halfway toward its $100,000 fundraising goal. 
Rodriguez
Newington police officer Henry Rodriguez, Bloomfield, poses with childhood friend Antonio Simoes, Newington, and his 3-year-old son, Xavier, and long-haired Rottweiler, Tyson. The friends attended the 2013 Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford.  Simoes, who is a head custodian with theHartford school district, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2002, just a few months before he married. After returning to Connecticut after a stint in the United States Marine Corps, Rodriguez decided to support Simoes’ battle by saddling up to ride and raise funds, using social media networking sites to reach out for support from friends, family and co-workers. To date, Rodriguez, who pedaled 25 miles in Simoes’ honor, has raised $300 toward a $500 goal. 
Michael Henry
Michael Henry, Wethersfield, poses at the start of the 2013 Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Henry, 52, rode 50 miles in support of the fight against MS. Decked out in a U.S. Army jersey, Henry is a U.S. Navy veteran. Today he works in sales for Inner Armour, a sports supplements provider.  Henry joined the ranks of Team Cardio Express, which to date has raised more than $50,000 toward a $100,000 goal. Team captain, Peter Rusconi, owner and operator of Cardio Express Fitness Centers, was diagnosed with MS in 2005. 
Marques Rides
Mike Marques, West Hartford, and Karen Butler, Manchester, pose at the finish line of the 2013 Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Marques, who rode 75 miles in support of the fight against MS, is a longtime volunteer with the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter. A commercial photographer by trade, Marques has photographed more than 50 of individuals from across the state, illustrating the many faces of multiple sclerosis. In early February 2014, the chapter will host a gallery showing of Marques’ work at the Mandell Jewish Community Center inWest Hartford. Butler oversees marketing and public relations for the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter. 
Hannah Kelsy
As Team Cardio Express looks on, Hannah Kelsy, Avon, sings the national anthem at the start of the 2013 Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Kelsy, a Los Angeles recording artist, is a senior at Watkinson School in Hartford. Kelsy stayed for the finish line activities, autographing her CD, Where I belong. 
Wathen
Bobbi-Jo Wathen, Wethersfield, and Amy Brintle, Canton, pose at the start of the Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, presented by Cashman + Katz, on Sunday, Sept. 8, at the Riverfront Boathouse in Riverside Park, located in Hartford. The two women are both members of Cardio Express Fitness Centers and were inspired to join the Cardio Express Bike MS team when they learned the Cardio Express Fitness Centers owner, Peter Rusconi, battles multiple sclerosis. 
Gordon
Lisa Gerrol, West Hartford, accepts donations from Douglas Gordon, West Hartford, of New England Financial Group, also located in West Hartford. Gordon, a financial representative with the company, is a long-time supporter of the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter. He recently raised more than $2,000 to support his lifelong friend, Peter Rusconi, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, a potentially debilitating disease, in 2004. Over the years, Gordon and New England Financial Group have donated thousands of dollars to support Bike MS, an event Rusconi and his business, Cardio Express Fitness Centers, sponsor. Gerrol is president and CEO of the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter. 
McKinnons
Manchester residents Matthew Corey and Karen Butler pose in front of Corey’s restaurant, McKinnon’s Irish Pub, located in downtown Hartford. On Friday, Sept. 13,  Butler retrieved Bike MS promotional lawn signs, which Corey posted at his pub and on his lawn at home in Manchester. The signs will be reused to promote next year’s ride. Corey is currently a Connecticut GOP candidate for Congress, First District. Butler oversees marketing and public relations for the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter. 
Ginny Tyler
Glastonbury residents Virginia “Ginny” Tyler and her husband, Gil, pose at the finish of the 2013 Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. The Tylers were instrumental in raising awareness about Bike MS, posting Bike MS lawn signs on their lawn and throughout Glastonbury. No stranger to multiple sclerosis, Ginny was diagnosed with MS in 1995, just after the first drug to slow the progression of the disease was introduced.  Ginny and Gil are longtime supporters of the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter, serving as volunteers in many capacities. 
Chudzik
Pam Chudzik, Marlborough, poses with Lisa Gerrol, West Hartford, at the finish of the 2013 Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Chudzik, who has been participating in Bike MS for the past six years, cycled on Team Pat. To date Chudzik, whose family member battles MS, has raised $800, surpassing her goal. Her team has raised almost $2,000. Gerrol is president and CEO of the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter. 
Ellis
Windsor residents Nickeisha Ellis and Yalanda Squirewell show off their medals at the finish of the 2013 Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Both women rode the 25-mile route. Squirewell, who has cycled in Bike MS for the past two years, hopes to raise $175.  Ellis, who participated for the first time this year, also hopes to raise $175. 
Ahern
Michael Ahern, Southington, interviews with Fox CT reporter Michael Magnoli, Southington,  just before the start of the 2013 Bike MS: Cardio Express Ride, held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Mangoli, who grew up in Southington, spent four years covering news in Louisiana before returning to Connecticut and Fox CT. Ahern, 47, rode 75 miles in support of the fight against MS. A longtime supporter of the National MS Society, Ahern rode for Team Cardio Express, which to date has raised more than $50,000 toward a $100,000 goal. Team captain, Peter Rusconi, owner and operator of Cardio Express Fitness Centers, including a fitness center in Southington, was diagnosed with MS in 2005. 
Bike MS Wilson
Bloomfield resident Paul Wilson poses with Team Velox Rota member Leah Pesculis, DanuersMass., before the start of the 2013: Cardio Express Ride, which was held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Ironically, both Wilson and Pesculis were diagnosed in 2009 with multiple sclerosis, a potentially debilitating disease. Wilson and Pesculis are longtime supporters of the National MS Society. Wilson, who serves as a spokesperson for the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter, sang the national anthem at the sendoff of the 50- and 75- miles. Pesculis cycled the 25-mile ride. 
Tukey and Parker
National MS Society volunteers Susan Tukey and Steve Parker pose at the start of the 2013: Cardio Express Ride, which was held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Both are fixtures at National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter events. Tukey, a resident ofEast Hartford, helped with cyclist registration and Parker, Newington, volunteered his time announcing the rider send offs, and then greeted each rider as they crossed the finish line of the 25- 50- and 75-mile rides. Parker, who is a radio and television host, also emcees the annual Walk MS at the University of Connecticut, West Hartford Campus. He will again emcee the 2014 Walk MS slated for Sunday, April 6. 
Bike MS Volunteers
Wethersfield resident Renee Aligata and Vernon resident Dru Gregorovic pose at the 2013: Cardio Express Ride, which was held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. The two, who served as volunteers at the event, met at the Cardio Express Fitness Center located in Vernon, where Gregorovic works as a trainer and Aligata completes her workouts. The two were inspired to get involved by the owner of Cardio Express Fitness Centers, Peter Rusconi, who was diagnosed with MS in 2004. 
Black Dog Jerseys
Cheshire residents Phil Unser and Anita Guerrera relax after completing a 75-mile bike ride at the 2013: Cardio Express Ride, which was held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Unger a realtor with Coldwell Banker. Guerrera is a CPA with Beers Hamerman & Co PC, in New Haven. The two ride to support friends and family living with MS. While Unger has participated in other National MS Society Bike MS rides in Windsor, the 2013 Cardio Express Ride was Guerrera’s first. 
Bartley
East Longmeadow, Mass., resident Chris Bartley prepares for his first 25-mile bike ride at the 2013: Cardio Express Ride, which was held Sunday, Sept. 8, at the historic Boathouse at Riverside Park in Hartford. Bartley, who has known people living with the disease through family, friends and coworkers, decided to ride in order to make a mark against MS. Employed by WireMold, in West Hartford, for the past 16 years, Bartley returned to the capitol area on his day off to participate in the ride, setting a fundraising goal of $175. 

 

About the Connecticut Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society

The Connecticut Chapter strives to provide knowledge and assistance to help people with MS and their families maintain the highest possible quality of life. These goals are achieved through vital national and local programs.

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis, an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system, interrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are moving us closer to a world free of MS. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with at least two to three times more women than men being diagnosed with the disease. MS affects more than 2.3 million people worldwide.

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