Woman raises money for rare cancer research in honor of late fiancé

- As hundreds of people are gearing up to raise money for rare cancer research on Saturday, one woman is raising money in honor of her fiancée who lost his battle with cancer last year.

Sue Novik is continuing the legacy of her fiancé, Brian Rozelle.

Rozelle, who had a rare form of cancer of the bile duct, was a spokesman for Cycle for Survival. The annual event is held in cities across the county and raises money for rare cancer research. Every dollar raised goes to support research led by Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.

“He just really embraced life,” Novik said.

Rozelle proposed to Novik in April 2015 as he was getting weaker by his terminal illness.

“I think that day is one of my most favorite because we forgot that he had cancer,” she said.

Rozelle died three days after the proposal.

His legacy now lives on. According to a spokeswoman for Cycle for Survival, Rozelle’s cells are being used in research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York city to help others with bile duct cancer.

His family and friends, known as team Rozelle Strong, have raised more than $130,000 for the cause.

For the first time, Rozelle won’t be riding my Novik’s side at the Cycle for Survival event, but she said the team will continue to ride until there is a cure for cancer.

“It’s hard to imagine him not being there and it’s hard that it didn’t save his life,” she added. “He said if it didn’t save his life it was going to save someone’s.”

This year, Cycle for Survival will take place Feb. 27. at the Equinox Sports Clubs in San Francisco and Palo Alto.

For more information on donating to rare cancer research, visit www.cycleforsurvival.org.

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