I have Rob's mountain bike that I started riding after his death. He used to ask me to ride with him and I always told him the only 2 wheels that I ride is controlled with my right hand.
You don't really look back at simple questions put forth in life, but sometimes events happen that change that. I look back and wish I could have those moments back. Would I answer differently? You bet I would! Even though I would have been destroyed trying to stay within a mile of him, the memories would be alive in my mind.
Riding his bike now is bittersweet. I know he's looking down and laughing his ass off, and smiling that I'm riding, but with that I just wish that I could turn the clock back. Life is short and there are no guarantees. Live each day to the fullest and try to be the best person you can be.
After The Rob Dollar Ride ended, I rode up to the Towers. I knew the ride would push me past anything I have done with that bike. I did not take into account that the only thing I ate was a protein shake at 4am. Also I was on my feet for 8 hours, and it was almost 90 degrees.
As I started up the mountain failure was never going to be an option. I never looked up to where I was, but just kept peddling. A good friend Doug rode with me. I knew I was slowing him down but that didn’t matter to me, the only thing on my mind was making it to the top and knowing Rob would be looking down and smiling. I also think he would have been proud of his dad.
There was 11 of us that rode up to the Towers after the event, everyone had their own thoughts , but we all did it for Rob. He always told me he wanted to inspire people and he did it without even knowing. He does now!!!!
On the way down I thought about him as I enjoyed the views as he did that day. Knowing these views were his last, I tried to take them in and imagine what he was thinking as he came down. I know in my mind he was enjoying the day and was having another great day on the bike.
As I continue to ride his bike, I really haven’t gotten to the point and may never that suffering is any fun. Why would anyone want to ride up South Mountain, let alone do it for fun? I guess time will tell if that will happen for me, but I'll keep trying. As for next year we’ll be going back to the Towers after the event.
Hopefully you can join us.
Written by John Dollar, President of the Rob Dollar Foundation and Father of Rob Dollar