Michael, Boris M Struk and Andrew J Kornberg with the Harley that Boris
will ride through Vietnam
a long road from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City. It’s even longer
if you’re making the journey on a bicycle.
who in their right mind would take to a bicycle to cover hundreds
of kilometres of rugged mountain and coastal terrain, dense jungle
and even parts of Vietnam’s barely inhabited central highlands
a question that Boris M Struk, Associate
Professor Andrew J Kornberg, and former world title boxer Barry Michael have asked themselves several times
since signing on to do just that. But next April the trio will take
on the challenge and pedal their way through Vietnam as part of
the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s ChallengeMD!
the three may seem an unlikely trio to be tackling a tough ride
like this together – but there is a common link. Barry
Michael is a former world champion boxer who is more at
home in the boxing ring than on a bicycle; MDA’s Executive
Director Boris M Struk is a self-confessed work-a-holic
whose long work hours rarely afford him the time to exercise; and
by contrast, Associate Professor Andrew J Kornberg,
Director of Neurology at Melbourne’s Royal Children’s
Hospital, is a keen cyclist in his spare time and regularly rides
50-100kms a week.
what has motivated these three very different men to team up and
don their cycling gear for ChallengeMD!?
of us – Andrew, Barry and myself – have been fortunate
enough in our lives to enjoy reasonably good health, and the strength
to use our muscles” says Boris Struk.
found it so hard to comprehend that someone as young as Ryan could
be faced with a bleak future. Personally I have always enjoyed good
health and it was my strength in the ring that won me the world
something that the majority of us take for granted, but the strenght
and ability to move voluntary muscles at will is also something
that becomes increasingly impossible for people who have a neuromuscular
disorder like Muscular Dystrophy.
taking on ChallengeMD! we hope that we can draw
attention to this insidious disorder, and raise awareness to further
research into finding a timely solution to neuromuscular disorders.”
knows only too well the devastating effect that Duchenne MD has
had on his son Ryan. He is also no stranger to
the challenges faced by a family learning to deal with the reality
of life with one of these disorders.
you have read your Information Pack and registered, we will send
you a Fundraising Pack containing everything you will need to get
you fundraising your way to Vietnam!
youngest son Ryan has valiantly battled the relentless progression
of his disorder for the last 25 years, however as each year progresses
his decline in strength seems to solidify Ryan’s resolve to
Executive Director of the MDA, Boris also knows only too well
the devastating effects that MD has on the other members of “our
MD Community” and it has been his determination that has
seen the MDA evolve over the last two decades to be the robust,
reliable and relevant organisation that it is today.
By challenging his own physical and mental stamina, Boris hopes
to bring others “on the ride” either physically with
him or financially by supporting his efforts and those of the
other ChallengeMD! Team members.
Professor Andrew J Kornberg has seen many children and adults
like Ryan in his career as a neurologist at the Royal Children’s
Hospital and has committed much of his professional life contributing
to that growing pool of knowledge. And in his capacity as Director
of the National Muscular Dystrophy Research Centre,
Andrew alsocontributes his skills to accelerating the search for
a timely solution.
Michael’s introduction to the Muscular Dystrophy Association
came through his involvement with Boris’ eldest son Leon.
He has been Leon’s trainer and physical fitness mentor and
friend. And it was on one of his visits to the Struk household
that he first met Ryan a number of years ago. It was also his
first encounter with someone affected by MD. “I found it
so hard to comprehend that someone as young as Ryan could be faced
with a bleak future. Personally, I have always enjoyed good health
and it was my strength in the ring that won me the world title.”
Barry said that he was committed to help in combating “this
muscle destroying disorder.” Barry was lso one of the many
high profile individuals who contributed to last year’s
Melbourne’s Delights project. Since then, Barry has become
a firm supporter of the Association, and has been touched by the
courage and determination of some of the people he has met along
the way who are affected by Muscular Dystrophy.