Died June 4, 1941
Irvin Sopinsky died September 26, 1966
The Michael Cimbura Story. At the beginning of 2015, just 6 years ago, Mike Cimbura was a vibrant, adventerous, loving husband and father who was about to have his entired world turned upside down.
On January 11, 2015 Mike was diagonsed with ALS. His wife, Nicole, and their 3 beautiful children, Seide, Aiden & Elle along with Mike vowed to fight this horrible disease and do whatever they could to bring greater awareness to the public and to fight at the govermental level to bring change to a disease that not much has changed since 1941 when baseball star, Lou Gehrig died from ALS.
Fight, that is just what they did. Mike lived on a street call Hackberry Lane in Highlands Ranch, Colorado along with a group of neighbors who were also his cycling buddies. After Mike’s diagnosis, two of his neighbors, Chris Baker and Mike Besser with a couple of Mike’s Racing Teammates, decided to do a charity ride they had heard about, The DEATH RIDE Tour .. Ride 2 Conquer ALS. They trained hard for the June event knowing it would be quite a challenge but not anywhere near the challenge Mike and his family were facing.While at a fundraising event, Mike Besser asked founder Barry Sopinsky if Mike could come to the event as a guest speaker. Barry immediately jumped on the idea and that June 2015, Mike and his son Aiden came for the last day finish from Durango back to Silverton. Mike was truly an inspiration to the riders speaking to them about his ALS and his Never Quit Philosophy.
At that time Mike was still able to walk and talk but he was losing weight and getting weaker day by day.Barry did not hear from Mike until the spring of the following year. That’s when he received an email from Mike saying that he wanted to participate in the upcoming 2016 DEATH RIDE Tour VII. Unfortunately, by now, Mike was confined to a wheelchair, breathing with a ventilator and speaking with an eyes gaze computer.
Barry had no idea how or what kind of bike could take an individual in Mike’s condition (breathing on a ventilator that required electicity) on a 235-mile bicycle ride over 5 mountain passes and 17,000 feet of elevation gain. Well that was until Barry found out about Zach Yendra and the “Bootlegger Bike".
The rest is history and another story that Barry would love to tell you at the event if you are new to the DEATH RIDE Tour. Here are some quick foot notes: Mike and Zach did the DEATH RIDE Tour 3 years in a row, 2016, 2017 & 2018. Mike was anxiously awaiting summer and his 4th DRT, which was the DEATH RIDE Tour’s 10th Anniversary. Unfortunately, Mike passed away on March 18, 2019, 3 months prior to the event. Mike’s legacy as the an Event Angel of Life, will live on for as long as people like you continue to ride in Mike's memory. my Dad's and all the other fallen ALS Warriors.
Ex - OSU alumni and 11 Veteran of the NFL