Len heads into the heart of the Colorado Rockies, as he arrives at Durango. He will continue to climb to the highest elevations on the course over the next 200 miles. Len dedicates this section of the ride to 8 year-old Ethan from Statesville, North Carolina. His family shares:
After a brief period of nausea, vomiting, and headaches, and several trips to the doctor, Ethan was sent to the hospital for tests. By the end of that day (Monday, November 30th), they had discovered a tumor in his pineal gland (brain) about the size of a ping pong ball.
Ethan had a pretty good several months after his surgery in January. It's a long recovery process but he was healing. In August, during one of his regular MRI scans, there were a few areas of concern, so he was referred to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital for more tests/evaluations.
Ethan and his mom flew to St. Jude's on Labor Day (Sept. 5th) for tests and scans. It was determined that he had 2 small tumors in his brain and 3 small tumors on his spine, and would need to undergo chemotherapy and radiation at St. Jude's. Ethan just got the results from his most recent scans in May and they are all clear. They go back for another round of scans in August.
Durango, Colorado is a relatively small city with a population of roughly 17,834 citizens. As of 2014, 98% of the population lives in urban areas. The average age of residents is 31.7 years old with a median household income of 63,909 dollars. Durango also has a very low crime rate and according to city-data.com is the tenth lowest air polluting city in the U.S. as of 2012. Durango, Colorado gets 19 inches of rain per year, significantly less than the U.S average of 39 inches. Durango was founded in 1880 by the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad. The Durango-Silverton Railroad was originally meant to transport silver and gold ore however eventually passengers rode the train to get a view of the beautiful landscape.
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