My heart is breaking as I write this, my dear friend and co-captain of Team I RIDE 4 HER, Ishiuan Hargrove, passed away peacefully on March 19, 2016 at her “Utopia” aka her home. The impact she had on those around her was legendary.
Ishiuan was a force of nature, and I can’t really put into words how much she will be missed.
Some will say “She lost her battle with breast cancer.” I won’t. If you knew Ishiuan, you know she didn’t lose anything. She won.
She won with every extra day/week/month/year she got to spend with Adam and her two young boys.
She won every time she got on that bike that she loved so much and rode 200 miles in YSC Tour de Pink East Coast, and then went back to Florida and chemo.
She won when she went to New York City for brain surgery and instead of taking a cab, she rode a Citibike to the hospital.
She didn’t lose a battle. She went to war and she beat the hell out of cancer with the spirit of a warrior who would never quit. She beat cancer by living her life to the fullest every day, inspiring those around her and advocating nationally for other young metastatic women. She beat cancer by not letting it dictate what she could or couldn’t do or achieve. She beat cancer by living life on her terms.
I got to spend a few hours with her a few days before she died, and it was a blessing and a gift to be able to share that time with her. We talked about the beginning of our little team of riders, what it had become and how it would continue to grow. She asked me to ride in her place in the upcoming TdP South ride and generally gave me a homework list of things she wanted me to do. If you knew her, this isn’t surprising. She was also still ever the advocate.
“This is the reality of breast cancer, Pablo. I’m doing this for your wife, Erin, and your daughter, Dalia,” she said, after we posted a picture to Facebook. When I told her she’d always be with us, she smiled and said, “I’ll be riding in the clouds on top of you guys.”
I’ve never met anyone more focused or determined to live life on her terms and be an advocate for others and an agent for change.
In lieu of flowers, her family has asked for donations to go to Young Survival Coalition using Ishiuan’s YSC Tour de Pink South page: south.ysctourdepink.org/hargrove