* * * I have permission from the "Belleville Times" newspaper to copy word for word on my web page. The article you are about to read is from October 22, 1998 by Richard Dickon the editor. It is on page 3 and continued onto page 4 and 5, with photos on page 3 and 5. The article has been modified a bit.
"Big Mike' Rides Again for MS"
* Belleville's Own "Big Mike" Dowd, 28, has completed another Multiple Sclerosis Bike Tour, this time raising a whopping $2,092.00 in the MS-170 Mid-Jersey Chapter tour and another $300.00 in the Greater North Jersey Chapter. Starting out in 1990 "just for fun," Dowd has raised around $10,000 to fight MS, a chronic, often disabling disease that randomly attacks the nervous system. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of the disease cannot be predicted, and numbness to paralysis and blindness. MS's devasting and unpredictable physical and emotional effects are usually diagnosed in adults between ages 20 and 40. Currently there are three treatments on the market that can actually address the course of MS, and many more studies are on the way.
* Since its founding in 1946, the National MS Society has fund more than $220 million in research.
* I his most recent tour, Dowd took on the Diet Coke MS-100 Bike tour on Sept. 12 and 13. A different course for 1998 challenged bikers with more hills to climb, and included a memorable stay at Season's Resort in Vernon, a former Playboy Resort. Dowd reported the food and accommodations better than usual, and included swimming video games and comedy shows.
* As the picture on page 3 illustrates, the view from Dowd's eighth floor window was spectacular, with a full view of the ski resort and trails near Mountain Creek Water Park.
* Another highlight was a stop at Space Farm in Beemerville, with the large, stuffed brown bear, Goliath.
* A particular thrill was Dowd's meeting Emme Anderson, formerly of Z-100 radio in New york City, and a supermodel, who also happens to be a real, nice human being, according to Dowd.
* The party at the finish line in Port Jervis, NY was bigger than last year, and a fitting finish to a fun time.
* Dowd wishes to thank the support of his mother and her friends at ADP, CD Warehouse, Kondreck Studios, Baker's Dozen Gang, the Mayor and Township Council, Nutley Hobbies (Sports Card Locker), two friends in Paterson, Belleville Times Editor Richard Dickon and Belleville Times Receptionist Barbra Conti. "Give yourself a big hand,"he said.