Dr Jean Roy and his wife Helene arrived in Orleans yesterday and Serge picked them up this morning. I started my day early in Amboise and cycled towards Orleans, through lovely villages and the City of Blois (photo below) and we all met in Beaugency, and cycled back to Orleans. I'm honored to have Jean and Helene Roy with me, and I know how lucky I am.
We stopped for a few minutes in a little village called St Hillaire to admire its magnificent 15th Century church and chat with Guillaume, (actually, he is originally Dutch, his name is Willem) who lives right across from the Church, with history in his front yard. The Church has, like every village, a monument to the Villlages war dead (Morts Pour La France) - 18 men from a tiny village in World War I. History here is everywhere.
Ten years ago I was diagnosed with acute leukemia. I was 49 years old, with a wonderful wife and two adorable children, many fulfilling interests, and a great career, In short, a charmed life. From one day to the next, I was thrown into a battle of life and death.
Thanks to the wonders of science, the help of devoted, caring and skilled doctors and nurses, and a bone marrow transplant (from my brother) I survived. More importantly, through the experience of my illness and recovery, I have grown and flourished.
To celebrate my recovery, and all those without whom it would have been impossible, I cycled across Europe in April and May 2010, and the blog of my trip is at www.acelebrationoflife.blogspot.com.
In 2012 I published Portraits of Hope, see www.portraitsofhope.ca.
This year, to mark the 10th anniversary of my reciverywe established the Maryse and William Brock Chair in Applied Research into Stem Cell Transplantation.
Together we can beat leukemia.