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home » Hike For Discovery » HFD 2007 » Feb 3, 2007 - Patapsco Valley State Park - Oella

Meet the 2007 HFD Team

Aileen Goss
Andrea Hoffman
Brianna McMullen
Cindy Kiamko
Cindy Vogelberger
Clint Reach
Deb Donofrio
Ellen Brooks
Erin Noseworthy
 Greg Palmer
Heather Mitchell
Heidi Sowers
 Jessica Koman
Joel Shalowitz
 Kate Brotman
 Kate Greenberg
Kendra Plemmons
Kevin Pearson ‡
Kim Guercio
Kyle Bray *
Lisa Fronc *
Lauren Allen †
Olivia Darden
Patti Harden **
Paula Finkelstein
Terrill Esposito
Tracy Kight
Rosamaria Somarriba
Samuel Somarriba
** Hike Leader
* Mentor
† LLS Staff
‡ Honorary Team Member

Hike Hero - Gary

A Hike Hero in the Hike For Discovery program is a person that is currently fighting a blood cancer. The members of each group hike in honor of this individual.

The Hike Hero for the Maryland Chapter is Gary Todd. He first discovered he had enlarged lymph nodes during a visit to the hospital after having chest pains during a hike in late November 2003. In June 2005 he began feeling tired and experiencing night sweats. At first he thought he was worrying unnecessarily because of his impending retirement the next year. However, after a number of tests it was diagnosed with Stage 4, Non-Hodgkin’s spleenic lymphoma.

Gary underwent a chemotherapy treatment in six cycles over eighteen weeks and on January 1, 2006 went into remission. Unfortunately in late March of 2006 he began to feel sick again and in mid-May he began treatment with Rituxin*. He has been diagnosed with chronic lymphoma and will be taking Rituxin every ninety days for at least the next two years.

* Rituxin is an advanced and less invasive medicine that was made possible by money donated for research. It attacks only the cancerous cells and leaves healthy cells intact.

Feb 3, 2007 - 1st Training Hike
Patapsco Valley State Park, MD - Oella

Time of Hike: 8:30 AM
Distance Hiked: 3.0 Miles
Temp During Hike: Low 23.0 °F   High 28.9 °F
Elevation Change: 200 Ft

We got a good start to our training this day. It was cold, in the 20s when we started, and a fresh dusting of snow was still on the ground. We met at hike leader Patti’s house in historic Oella, MD for a short 3 mile hike in Patapsco Valley State Park along the Patapsco River.

We soon found out that a cold snowy day is a good time to test how sure footed you are. Icy patches could be found along the trail in some dangerous places. Luckily we didn’t have any accidents.

The group did well on this hike. We had more time to get to know each other than we did the last time we got together. As we hiked we naturally split off into smaller groups of people hiking at the same pace. These small groups made conversation easy and each time we got started again after a break the groups reformed in a different way allowing all of us to talk.

The trail itself was fairly easy. It was level for the first mile and a half to Union Dam on the Patapsco River near route 40. Then we turned and made a steep ascent 200 ft to the top of the hill beside the river. From there it was level walking through hilltop forest. The trail led us past some signs of past lives in the area, several junk piles were next to the trail full of rusting history.

  About Patapsco Valley State Park, MD

Park Headquarters
8020 Baltimore National Pike
Ellicott City, MD 21043
(410) 461-5005

Patapsco Valley State Park extends along 32 miles of the Patapsco River, encompassing 14,000 acres and five developed recreational areas. Recreational opportunities include hiking, fishing, camping, canoeing, horseback and mountain bike trails, as well as picnicking for individuals or large groups in the park's many popular pavilions.

For more information visit:


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