Sharon Wambold: pedal mettle - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Sharon Wambold: pedal mettle

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by Sunny Layne

REINBECK (KWWL) -- Once she thought her young daughter might die of cancer, but one Reinbeck woman happily watched her little girl grow up. Now at the age of 54, she is riding 100 miles in one day to help other families fighting for life. Meet Sharon Wambold, she's someone you should know.

Five to six days a week, you'll find Sharon Wambold biking the Cedar Valley trails.

"I ride the fabulous trail system two to three to four hours," she said.

This busy massage therapist and instructor is training for a race called the "Country's Most Beautiful Bike Ride," 100 miles all in one day in Lake Tahoe.

"At age three she was somewhat lethargic, spiking fevers," Wambold began.

This ride began with a harrowing experience 21 years ago.

"I took her to a doctor," Wambold said. "I thought she had mono, he thought she had cancer."

The diagnosis: devastating. Three-year-old Sarah had leukemia.

"As a mom, you do whatever you can, and sometimes you do even the crazy things to support your children," she said.

Wambold and her husband saw Sarah through chemotherapy.

Sarah went into remission and has happily stayed that way since 1988.

"Really being inspired by her whole outlook on things, it never really seemed to get her down at all," Wambold said of Sarah.

More than two decades later, this mother of two still finds inspiration from her daughter's example.

The race is more than just exercise, she's cycling with Team in Training. So far she's raised more than $7,000 dollars for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society - a group that once helped her.

"It emphasizes, you can never stop giving," she said.

Wambold hopes this ride will help families end their stories as happily as she did.

Sharon's daughter Sarah is also giving back: she now works for the American Cancer Society in Texas.

The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society is still recruiting people to train for marathons, half marathons and bike races for this fall. Click here to learn more about Team in Training.

To donate to Sharon Wambold's cause, click here.

Reporter: Sunny Layne

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