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Russell Willer spoke about having cancer at age 24 at the unveiling of the Sporting Life Bikes mural. (Photo: UHN)  ​​

When Russell Willer's doctor told him he had cancer, Willer distinctly remembers his reply.

"But doctor, I need to go skydiving before I die," he recalled.

On May 29, Willer spoke about his experience with cancer as a young adult at the unveiling of the Sporting Life Bikes mural. 

The massive artwork celebrates the 6th annual Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer,​ held June 8 -9, of which Willer is an active participant. Thirty per cent of Ride participants are cancer survivors.

Willer is one of the event's strongest ambassadors, and spoke on behalf of the Ride participants depicted on the mural.​

The Toronto resident was 24 when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma – and today, at age 27, he's a cancer survivor. 

"This is why I ride," he said, sharing stories of the compassionate care he received at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre.   

Sporting Life is the event's newest sponsor and was eager to raise further awareness by featuring the Ride on the side of their Eglinton Avenue and Roselawn Avenue location.  

"As a cycling retailer, we want to align ourselves with causes where we can connect with and support cyclists—both veteran cyclists and those who want to take it up in hopes of adopting a healthier lifestyle," said John Roe, Director of Marketing for Sporting Life. "There isn't a more successful and better organized event than The Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer, so we are proud to have it featured on our wall."

The Sporting Life Bikes mural for The Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer is located at the Sporting Life store in Toronto at 2454 Yonge Street (north of Eglinton Avenue at Roselawn Avenue).

The Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer will be held June 8-9, 2013.

To sponsor a rider or donate, please visit www.conquercancer.ca or call 1-877-699-2453.

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