For many, Jim Valvano first became a household name in March 1993 when they heard his moving ESPYS speech. During that speech, Valvano announced the formation of the V Foundation and provided a heartfelt call to action for cancer research funding, inspiring millions of people over the last 30 years.
However, for NC State University alumnus Rob Cash, Valvano was an inspirational figure even before that monumental speech. Cash was an avid Wolfpack basketball fan throughout Valvano’s coaching career and saw his larger-than-life passion first-hand.
“I saw him a few times either at football games when he was athletic director or on campus. He had a great personality and was very affable.” Cash went on to say that he still to this day finds inspiration in Jim’s ESPYS awards speech.
As a long-time champion of cancer research, Cash will continue his commitment to the cause this year by participating in the sixth annual Victory Ride to Cure Cancer presented by CBS 17 on May 20. With a renewed love for cycling and a heart for helping others, Cash will be riding and fundraising for groundbreaking cancer research while honoring the special people in his life who have faced this disease.
In 2006, Cash’s father was diagnosed with cancer, which re-occurred twice, but through a range of treatments, including new drug trials, he is currently in remission. In addition, another very close person in his life was recently diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer, which they are determined to fight.
In the 17 years since his father’s first diagnosis, Cash has seen research in action and what an impact that makes for those battling the disease. “The more recent medicine he used had side effects, but nothing like what he went through at first. It’s amazing how far treatment has come,” said Cash. Even with this progress, he recognizes how much work still needs to be done to give every cancer patient, and their loved ones, the hope they deserve.
As Cash fundraises and prepares for his 60-mile Victory Ride, he is riding toward the same goal Jim Valvano set out for us 30 years ago: Victory Over Cancer®. “We need to reach a place where there is a quick cure or that cancer just doesn’t exist. Victory Over Cancer means people don’t need to fear a cancer diagnosis or the effects of its treatment.”
To join Rob and hundreds of other Victory Riders who are supporting game-changing research, you can register as a rider, volunteer or make a donation.