St. Louis (KSDK) - Pedal the Cause is very personal to many people. Leisa Zigman met the president of Kennelwood Pet Resorts the other day, and was so struck by his message and his reason for fighting for a cure.
"We met in Forest Park, at Steinberg Ice Rink, and when I spotted her skating around it was love at first sight," said Alan Jones.
Jones can't help but smile when he thinks about his wife, Janie. The high school sweethearts, married, started a family and built a business. Then in the fall of 2009, doctors diagnosed Janie with stage four colon cancer.
"We were fortunate in the amount of time we got," said Jones. "Yeah, but it was a very difficult time."
The cancer progressed to Janie's liver and for more than two years, she gave it all she had. Janie lost her battle earlier this year.
"She was just such a fighter, because when this happened she was determined to fight it, and live as long as she could and do as much as she could do," said Jones.
Jones became aware of the Pedal the Cause while Janie was receiving treatment at the Siteman Cancer Center.
"I love the fact, that all the money raised stays here in St. Louis, it's not being siphoned off by a national organization, I know who we are helping, I know the job they do," said Jones. "I'm just 100 percent committed to helping pedal the cause raise as much as they can."
To support that commitment, Kennelwood is doing its part. From selling "fun-glasses" to Pedal the Cause pet collars, a majority of the funds raised goes straight to Pedal the Cause.
"For me, now it's a mission to help find the solutions, help find the cure," said Jones.
And as Team Kennelwood participates in this year's ride, Jones will be leading the way, riding in the memory of the love of his life and so many others fighting cancer.
"I want to be there the day they find a cure for cancer and say I helped, I was there, I fought with you guys and I'm glad I accomplished this," said Jones. "And I want to be able to feel good about it, and I didn't just stand on the sidelines and watch this disease take more people."
NewsChannel 5 is a proud sponsor of Pedal the Cause. To donate, visit their website.