Category Archives: Health

An Open Letter to the Texas 4000

The Texas 4000 Ride is a fund-raiser and promotional event for cancer research projects at the M.D. Anderson Research Centers promoted by the University of Texas. The ride goes from Austin, Texas to Anchorage, Alaska and pretty much takes all summer. I want to go on the next ride, but it is geared towards students, this is my letter to the ride organizers. 

To The Texas 4000

My name is David Laguna and I am an admirer of the Texas 4000 project. I would love the opportunity to take part in the next ride.  I am not a student of the University of Texas, but I do have connections to both the University of Texas and the MD Anderson Cancer Center. I also have a very personal reason for wanting to help.

A few years ago I lost my older brother to pancreatic cancer and now I have learned I have a longtime friend who has been diagnosed with terminal cancer. Cancer took my brother Abel very quickly. In the last days of my brother’s life he encouraged me to pursue a chance to move forward in my career and not pass up any once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. It was with a heavy heart that I left him to travel to an audition. Upon my arrival I learned my brother had passed. My brother Abel’s last words to me were simply “David be the bull, take charge of the chance to live your dream and know I will always be with you.”  I dedicated my efforts to him; with his inspiration I did well and was able to achieve my goal.

I am back in Texas now and now I am faced with cancer taking someone else who has been a part of my life, my friend Eddie. I met Eddie many years ago in Boy Scouts; we camped together, hiked together and played sports together all through school. We reconnected when I returned to Austin. I looked forward to sharing some time together with Eddie and now cancer has entered the picture. I’m not sure how long Eddie will be with us but I would like to do something in his honor and in honor of my brother Abel.

I understand the ride is meant for students, but as I stated I do have a connection. I have worked for UT starting in the 1980’s as an EMT at events. Today I work the home football games as security for the Touchdown Club and private suites on the 8th floor of the stadium. My other connection is with the UT/MD Anderson Cancer Center-Science Park in Smithville, Texas. My roommate is an Associate Professor and research scientist there and I have friends and acquaintances also working there. I would like to go as a representative of the wonderful and dedicated folks at Science Park.

I do have some skills and experience that I feel could prove helpful.  First I am a life-long cyclist, ex- bicycle shop owner and pro level bicycle mechanic Shimano Bicycle Components once rated in the top 10%.  In addition I am former Staff Cycling Coach for the Sally Edwards/Danskin Triathlon Camps.  I am confident I could help with any bicycle repair/rider issues that might arise.  I am also an ex-Firefighter/EMT, which could prove handy in an emergency. My other skills are as a professional photographer and writer and I hope to use those skills to chronicle the story of this ride.  Finally I am an experienced promotions and event manager with experience in radio/television promotions.  My first choice in participation would be to ride along with the riders, but I would also be open to traveling along in a support vehicle role if it better served the ride.

Please consider allowing me to be a part of the next Texas 4000.

Respectfully,

 

David Laguna

American Latino

Americanlatino.org is my view of the world today. So who am I is the question you may have. I am David Laguna, a first generation American of Mexican decent. My grandmother came to the United States in 1917 in a covered wagon; my mother was just three months old at that time.

I grew up in Austin Texas, it shaped who I became as I grew up.  I’ve been described as a Latino “Forest Gump”; I’ve worn a lot of shoes. I’ve been an athlete, motorcycle racer, a firefighter, para-legal, bailiff, small business owner, and photographer/writer. In my travels I have covered the USA coast-to-coast and border-to-border. The diversity of our country is amazing and awe-inspiring. Perhaps the one thing that stood out to me the most was how Latinos have spread across the country. No longer are Latinos just migrant farm workers, laborers, etc. Today’s Latinos are in all walks of life professionally. There is a little Forest Gump in many of us.

So welcome to my page, this is my view of an assortment of things in life. Things like the news, informative things, fun things, serious things, entertaining things and sometimes just weird, random things that come across my path…Come see the world through my brown eyes.