Mark S., age 47, Virginia


(Day 3 of AIDS ride from Raleigh to Washington, DC.) – Up ~ 5 AM; breakfast at mess tent; sat near Dan Pallotta (president of Pallota Team Works, organizers of the ride). Woke Sarah up; took tent down with Cerise. Rode out with Sarah ~7 AM with her intending to go just to first pit stop => she made it all the way to pit #4 @ Fredericksburg Battleground for lunch (60 miles); saw Kathy Hodge and Katie Byron there => talked to Kathy => she took our picture; “bye” to Sarah after lunch (she “sagged” and took a bus on into camp => rode last 38 miles solo => rode into camp at Stonewall Jackson H.S. in Manassas ~ 6:30 => Sandra met me at ride-in & told me about Daddy dying this morning => I sobbed in her arms; cell phone to mom => more tears; she said “I think Daddy would want you to finish your ride” => decided to finish ride tomorrow; found Sarah and told her about Daddy => more tears; walked through camp with Sandra & Sarah looking for Sandra Brown; showed Sandra my tent and got backpack out of it (Nancy had pitched tent for us and put backpack in it). Found Sandra Brown and told her ~ Daddy; supper in mess tent with Sandra, Sarah, Sandra, Kathy, Katie Byron, Cerise, Beth, etc.; watched stage program (they introduced crew managers, Palotta staff, etc.); “bye” to Sarah and Sandra Brown => to Holiday Inn in Fairfax with Sandra ~ 9:00 PM. Sandra ordered me two beers from room service => drank ‘em after my shower. Phone to Emily re taking care of Sampson and Sadie & to Wendy at mom’s re funeral arrangements, etc. => she told me about plans to scatter Daddy’s ashes at Ocracoke on Tuesday; Sandra rubbed my aching legs, etc. => talk in bed with Sandra => made love.