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John Phelan: 12 Who Made a Difference in Central Mass in 2012

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

 

Phelan with his daughters Elizabeth (left) and Sarah (right). Phelan's family volunteers at the Challenge's water stop in Whitinsville.

John Phelan of Whitinsville climbed on his bike this August to cruise across the Commonwealth, raising $7,000 for cancer research.

The Pan Mass Challenge is America's first fundraising bike-a-thon, and begins in Central Mass in the town of Sturbridge. The race generates more money than any other athletic fundraising event in the nation, raising about half of The Jummy Fund's yearly revenue.

The Challenge goes through 43 Commonwealth towns, with cyclists choosing from 10 different routes of varying mileages. The shortest being a one day, 25-mile ride that goes from Wellesley to Sharon, and the longest being a two day, 192-mile ride from Sturbridge all the way to Provincetown.

For Phelan, the Pan Mass Challenge is personal. Phelan lost both his grandmother and father to cancer, so the PMC's mission to raise money for cancer research obviously resonates with him. While fundraising can be a challenge in itself, Phelan says you can still have fun doing it, and he completed his third PMC in 2012.

 

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