* Why We PMC: The MCats Band Story

17 Seconds #38

2016-08-07 The MCats Band rocks the PMC.org party boat from Provincetown to Boston to fight cancer
2016-08-07 The MCats Band rocks the PMC.org party boat from Provincetown to Boston to fight cancer

[Editor’s note: This edition of “17 Seconds” has been heavily cross-posted (on clocktowerlaw.com, erikjheels.com, giantpeople.com, mcatsband.org, Facebook, and LinkedIn) because cancer sucks!]

On Sunday 08/06/17, my band will again be playing on the Pan-Mass Challenge party boat from Provincetown to Boston at the conclusion of the #PanMass2017 cancer fundraiser.

Here is why we PMC. Cancer has touched the lives of many of us in the band.

Josh Stein, our band’s fearless drummer, lost his mother to cancer. Jon Oltsik, our band’s rhythm guitar player, and Paul Greenspan, our band’s lead guitar player and former PMC rider, both have friends and family members impacted by cancer.

Mark Wessel, the band’s original sound guy (and all-around good guy), rides for Team Lick Cancer. Mark’s PMC page (which is a great place to donate if you have not already done so) explains why he rides:

“The team’s 2010 pedal partner, Charlotte O’Shea, and our 2012 partner, Avalanna Routh, both died of atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumors (AT/RT), a rare pediatric brain tumor. They were each six years old when they died. We ride in their honor, and many of us are directing our funds to fight this particular disease.”

My kids’ Finnish grandmother contracted and beat ovarian cancer in the 1980s. Then in 1995 (a “cruel joke,” said her doctor), she contracted leukemia, succumbing to the disease in 2003. I have been supporting cancer-fighting causes ever since (including BeTheMatch.org and PMC.org). In the 1990s, Verio co-worker Tom Martin was one of my first friends to ride the PMC. In 2005, a bunch of Acton parents formed The MCats Band to raise money for our local elementary school, and we’ve been playing to raise money for various charities ever since. As soon as I lost track of how many folks I knew who were riding the PMC (including Vince Asbridge, Glen Glater, Mike Cavaretta, Mark Wessel, and James Markson, just to name a few), I started looking for other ways to support the cause. Then in 2011, Paul English introduced me to PMC’s Dave Hellman, and soon my law firm, Clocktower Law, started providing pro bono IP assistance to the PMC.

Eamon Tighe (the band’s bass player and lead singer) has also been touched by cancer. His sister died the day before the PMC last year. In Eamon’s words:

“For many years, I have supported a good friend riding the PMC, but it was not until this time last year that I was directly affected by cancer. It was the night before my band took the ferry from Boston to Provincetown to pick up and entertain the riders on the return journey. Sad as I was reflecting on my sister’s life, I felt a tremendous emotional lift as I looked out on a sea of riders and contemplated what they had just endured in the fight to find a cure for cancer. I believe in ‘closer by the mile,’ and with the resources generated by the PMC, one day we will find the cure.”

So ride on, riders! And DO rock the boat! Thanks for your support! One more song!


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