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Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2016

The Lone Rider

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Woman rides coast to coast for cancer awareness

Tracy Delp of Port Orchard, Washington is making her way to Delaware on horseback as part of a coast-to-coast journey to raise cancer awareness. Delp arrived in Cherokee recently on a stop along her route to the East Coast. Photo by Mike Leckband
Tracy Delp of Port Orchard, Wash. began a cross country journey on horseback on Mothers Day 2011, in honor of her late mother Millie Delp and others who have succumbed to cancer.

Delp and her horse Sierra, along with her dog Ursa, recently stopped about three miles outside of Cherokee to camp for the night.

Delp, who is a strong animal lover, also would like to remind people that cancer doesn't just affect humans, but animals as well.

Her goal is to bring everyone together for a common cause, recognizing that cancer is cancer is cancer no matter whom is diagnosed and to raise money for the treatment of people and animals alike.

Delp stated "the first part of the word cancer is can."

"Cancer, a word which changes the course of lives in seconds." said Delp.

"I think it is time to put the CAN back in cancer. Remembering that we Can do anything, with much more potential when we do it together," she added.

According to Delp, It does not matter the color of your skin, nor is it species specific. Its effect on those diagnosed and those related is often devastating news. The toll it takes physically, mentally and emotionally can be a weight that burdens the strongest of shoulders.

Her ride across country is not just a publicity stunt but a call to come together, to offer support, empowerment and a new outlook for those who have been affected by this illness in any capacity.

Also the ride is about raising money people for the advocacy of cancer patients and providing a professional social network of support for anyone with cancer. To raise money for animals to provide grant opportunities to aid in paying for expensive treatment options.

"What we learn about cancer from one another can be shared with each other," said Delp.

She has faced many obstacle along her way, including her partner, who turned back when they reached Idaho. She had to re-plan her trip but Delp's determination is strong.

She started out with three horses and a pack mule and a truck and horse-trailer. When her partner turned back, he returned with two of the horses, and Delp's mule passed away along the route. Delp suspected the mule was sick.

This left her with out a driver for her truck and horse-trailer. Now, she rides for a day or so and then finds rides back to her truck and drives forward. Many time she meets people who will drive her truck and horse-trailer ahead of her and she meets up with the rig.

"You get to learn a lot about people, when you're doing something like this,' said Delp. "I never even let my ex have the keys to my truck, now I hand them over to people I hardly know," she added.

It has been the people she has meet along this trip that have helped her out and keep Delp along the path of her goal. "Without them I would have to have turned back a long time ago," commented Delp.

Delp has hit a snag this last week and had to make a trip back back to Washington shortly after the time of this interview. She received word that one of her beloved dogs has, as she put it, "Ironically" is dying of cancer.

Her horse and trailer have remained here in Cherokee while she attends to her business in Washington.

What began as a planned eight-month journey is now well into it's second year. Delp has a lot of ground to cover if she is to make it to Delaware, the planned destination.

But in a world were most people scoff and tell others that you can't do something, Delp has already proven that you Can, as long as you have the determination.

To learn more about Delp's adventure you can log on to her website at www.coast2coastforcancer.webs.com.

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