MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - The Miami Dolphins are taking the fight off the field and hitting the pavement to raise awareness for a good cause, and for two of this year’s participants, it’s become a family affair.
Michael Fine and Mandy Maxwell are a young, vibrant and healthy couple.
They’re happy, in love and both of them are cancer survivors.
The duo is not unlike any other couple, but they’ve faced adversity early in their relationship, faced it head on, and came out together on the other side.
On Saturday, they’ll be participating in the 10th annual Dolphin’s Cancer Challenge.
“I signed up for the 100-mile bike ride, and — at this point 10 years ago, I was on a feeding tube, and I couldn’t talk,” cancer survivor Fine said. “So my goal is, obviously like everybody else, is to raise funding for cancer research.”
Fine was diagnosed with stage four neck and head cancer in 2010 and was in remission when he met Maxwell through mutual friends in 2015.
Eight months into their relationship, Maxwell was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
“When you first hear you have cancer, it’s like, ‘Oh, my God’ you know, ‘Why did this happen to me?’ ‘Why me?’” Maxwell said. “You know, you don’t expect it to happen in your life, and I realize now how many people it happens to.”
Fine has been cycling in the Cancer Challenge for several years now, and this year he’s inspired Maxwell to do the same.
“I’m riding this year. I’m very excited. I hope I can make the 35 miles. We’ll see,” Maxwell said, “but I’m excited about doing it, and I’m excited that other people can say, ‘Hey, you get through this, you get past it.'”
The Dolphins Cancer Challenge is the Miami Dolphins largest signature charity event.
Its mission is simple: To raise money for cancer research and improve the quality of life for those with the disease.
Every penny raised goes to the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, which is part of U-Health at the University of Miami.
Fine first rode in 2016 in Maxwell’s honor and raised more than $8,000 in her name.
This year, they’ll be crossing the finish line together.
“To be here with Mandy, and having gone through the struggle with Mandy, it’s just a beautiful thing, and this year we’re gonna get to ride together and cross the finish line together,” Fine said.
The Dolphins Cancer Challenge takes participants all around Miami-Dade and Broward County.
One-hundred percent of the proceeds go to cancer research, and there’s still time to sign up before Saturday’s race.
For more information, click here.
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