So much for the alleged "health benefits" of mountain biking....
Brian Hahl, Stockertown cyclist who raised multiple sclerosis
awareness for 20 years, died
Saturday, July 11, 2009
By COLIN MCEVOY
Brian Hahl, a 50-year-old teacher and cyclist from Stockertown, died
Thursday afternoon after suffering a heart attack during a bicycle
Hahl, who had been a science teacher for 27 years at Hillsborough
Middle School in Somerset County, N.J., was preparing to participate
in his 20th consecutive bicycle run to raise funds and awareness for
Jim Durham, a teaching colleague and friend who planned to ride
alongside Hahl, said Hahl's teammates will now be riding in his
"He completely inspired me," said Durham, 41, who has multiple
sclerosis but rode 50 miles alongside Hahl last year.
"He pushed me to ride when I said that I couldn't do it," said Durham,
who plans to ride 150 miles this year. "He knew that I could do it,
and I'm so grateful to him for that."
Hahl was planning to lead the Lehigh Valley-based team MS Milestones
in the National MS Society's annual PA Dutch 2009, a July 18-19
cycling event expected to raise $325,000 to battle the chronic
Linda Ruzanski, a former teaching colleague of Hahl who has multiple
sclerosis, said Hahl looked forward to the event every year, and
worked hard to raise money and awareness to fight the disease.
"He was just a good man with a good heart, and his students absolutely
loved him, just loved him," said Ruzanski, 58, of New Hope, who knew
Hahl for 24 years. "He will be missed in more ways than one."
Hahl was also a member of the local Lehigh Wheelmen Association and
rode for 14 years in the Pennsylvania Perimeter Ride Against Cancer in
honor of his father, who died of cancer.
When Hahl first started riding in the National MS Society's PA Dutch
event, he did not know anyone with multiple sclerosis, nor had he even
ridden a bicycle seriously before....