To honour our beloved husband and Dad with a ride in his name is beyond any feeling or words we could ever express. We are so incredibly proud of the amazing community George helped forge so many years ago, strengthened by the countless kilometers, mountain climbs and foreign terrains hustled by his fellow riders and friends. We are one big family, infinitely linked by our loss and the huge void left in our lives since he has been gone.
Because George wasn’t only ours, and while we sometimes wish we can
be selfish in our grief we are reminded every single day how much impact his time was here on earth, and how truly special he will always be to those who knew him. He was so proud of his friends, and would be extremely humbled (and a little speechless) to see you all hit the saddle in his honour.
‘Ride Maui for GV’ is the event we never knew we were training for. Physically and emotionally this ride will bring out the best in us a and celebrate the incredibly brave, strong, and resilient man our Husband/Dad was. In the weeks following his diagnosis and all throughout his post-surgery recovery we pitched the idea of a ride in Hawaii to him as the proverbial ‘light at the end of the tunnel’. “You’ll get through it”, we kept telling him, “This time next year year we’ll be in Hawaii.” He really, really, wanted to get through it. Not just for himself in light of his own battle with cancer, but simply because he loved to ride, and loved the challenge of taking part in an event as equally grueling as it was rewarding. Despite the occasional struggles on a hill climb, the competitive downward sprints and the perpetual sore bum, George was a proud spokesperson for innovative medicines and passionate about raising money for cancer research. He devoted himself to helping others in all that he did, and wished for nothing more than to find a cure for these insidious diseases.
While it breaks our hearts that Dad cannot physically be present to take part in this event, he will without a doubt be pedaling right alongside every single rider in spirit, from beginning to end. We’re sure Paradise looks somewhat like the island of Maui… and are so blessed and eternally grateful for this event in Dad’s honour.
Maria, Patrice, Deanna and Alexia Varkanis