An inspiring revolution

Written by on September 14, 2010 at 12:41 pm

Carolyn Rossi wheels the MS Challenge Walk, inspiring everyone who witnesses her determination. Her husband Brian is as moved as anyone.

The MS Challenge Walk invites us to take action to create a world free from multiple sclerosis. The event in turn inspires us with the people and acts that we witness along the trail.

Last year, bicycle crewman Craig Thorpe was inspired by seeing Carolyn wheeling up a hill and insisting on doing it herself in what she called her "Rocky moment."

Carolyn's inspiration strikes close to home for her husband, Brian, who was on this year's bike crew. He submitted this guest blog post relating his experience on the MS Challenge Walk.

Many of you may not recognize my name; I am the extremely honored and privileged husband of Carolyn Rossi.  Carolyn is that very joyful and inspiring trooper who wheels the MS Challenge Walk in her red wheelchair, A.K.A "Red", each year for the last five years.

I volunteer on the bike support crew each year and get to work with a great team of guys and gals!

For me, this year included one of my most encouraging and proud moments.  I was completely amazed to see how much the MS Challenge Walk family actually loves my wife and how inspired they are by her determination to push through the burn and pain and fight this disease head on!

Whether it was a casual walker passing by and saying "Great job, you are so inspiring," motorcycle safety crew members embracing her with huge hugs and telling her they loved her, or everyone knowing to queue up "Eye of the Tiger" as she passes by — it is so amazing the love and encouragement that you all bestow upon such a wonderful and inspiring woman! 

As Carolyn exited the second stop on Sunday — the one with the Dunkin' Donuts theme — she literally took a "Dunkie Junkie" t-shirt off someone's back, saying to me "This stop means that freakin' hill is right around the corner!"  Carolyn pushed and pushed up Setucket Hill that morning, keeping her team members close by but not letting them dare touch her wheelchair, with "Eye of the Tiger" blasting. Medical crew bicyclist Billy, several walkers, and fellow bike crew members made comments to me like "She's really gonna do this!" "She's killin' this thing!" "She's haulin' it!" I was such a proud husband!  Sure enough, with each and every push, she inched closer and closer to the peak of that hill.  At the top was one of the motorcycle safety team members saying "You go, girl! I have a 'wow' sticker for you up here — just a little farther!"

Many may not know that I lost my beloved grandmother to complications related to MS. She was not only my grandmother but also a very close friend; I loved her so much!  Part of my heart truly believes that Carolyn was placed in my life to carry the torch for people like my grandmother.  My grandmother would be so proud and honored that her grandson was blessed with such an amazing and courageous wife, and her great-grandson with such an inspiring mother.

Thank you to all for walking this past weekend and making the event a success!  Thank you to each and every person who shared a kind word or thought with my wife.  Just as each wheel and push Carolyn makes inspires all of you, each step you take encourages and inspires Carolyn.  It's what makes her go go go!

Not to get overly religious, but in the Bible there is a passage, Proverbs 31.  This speaks of a "woman of noble character".  In the latter sections of the passage it says "many women do noble things, but you surpass them all".  Carolyn, you are a blessing and an amazing woman!  I love you so much!

Now — get wheeling for next year!!

Brian, a resident of Central Massachusetts, has participated for several years in the MS Challenge Walk as a member of the bike support crew.  Not only does his wife Carolyn have MS, but his grandmother had MS and eventually died from complications related to it. Brian is best known to as the provider of tropical flavored Starbursts and Jolly Rancher candies along the trail.

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