Liz's Story

A rainbow at the end of a downpour - Liz's journey with cancer and the ride for roswell

Liz Marshall Metcalfe’s first experience with the Ride for Roswell was volunteering with a group of University at Buffalo students in 2015 – the infamous year of the torrential downpour. At this time in her life, Liz had no connection to Roswell Park. She was participating as an act of charity and to make her students feel good, too. Standing out in a thunderstorm had her second guessing her decision.

But then just six months later, Liz was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer at only 36 years old. She went through chemotherapy, surgery, radiation, hormone therapy and reconstructive surgery to beat cancer. She’s been cancer free ever since. 

Liz made sure to take advantage of all the amazing programs Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center has in place for patients, including the Adolescent and Young Adult Program (AYA), support groups, acupuncture and physical therapy. 

2016 was the first year she rode in the Ride while still going through treatment. Liz and her co-captain Debbie founded the team Let’s Get Lizzycle in her honor and Liz hasn’t looked back since.

The meaning of the Ride

Liz at the finish line

Liz has participated in the Ride for the last five years and as a cancer survivor, it means the world to her.

“I think when you’re a cancer patient, you don’t realize how it’s going to follow you forever. I felt the need to get support and Roswell Park has been able to do that for me. That is, in large part, why I do the Ride – to support the place that supports me.”

Additionally, Liz’s work at the University at Buffalo, also fuels her because she sees the impact of fundraising dollars every day. 

“I work in basic sciences at UB and we’re very aware of how important research funding is. Sometimes, we work with some of the researchers at Roswell. That just adds to the whole community aspect of it.” 

The Ride means so much to Liz – she understands its impact as both a survivor and as a rider, as well as the importance of coming together for a common cause.

“I think one of the bittersweet parts about the Ride is how there is always someone else who we’re riding for. Every year, life happens and more people are added to the list who have been diagnosed or passed away. It’s an ongoing thing. It’s always around. 

I think the fact that we have the Ride, it gives us that extra vehicle to show support for those people. It helps from a fundraising point of view, but it also helps that individual to feel that a community is behind them.” 

It's not too late to join liz at this year's Ride for roswell

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