After a bout of flu-like symptoms and a headache, both of which persisted, Michael Brunsman went to his physician. His doctor ordered a blood draw; the results determined Michael actually had leukemia. In fact, at the age of 26, he was diagnosed with biphenotypic leukemia, meaning he had the rare combination of both Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) and Acute Myelogeneous Leukemia (AML).
He immediately began chemotherapy at the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center in Indianapolis and eventually had a bone marrow transplant.
Now, 11 years later, Michael enjoys his family and friends, works in management with UPS, and cycles anywhere from 20 to 35 miles each week. Oftentimes, his father is cycling with him. He also returns to the cancer center for regular check-ups.
Michael, his father, and his wife are currently gearing up for the 24 Hours of Booty ride that is coming to Indianapolis for the first time in late June. They are all participants on the IU Simon Cancer Center’s team, Pedaling Cures, and hope to raise at least $1,000. LIVESTRONG founder Lance Armstrong was cured of his testicular cancer at the IU Simon Cancer Center.
“I think 24 Hours of Booty coming to Indianapolis is a good way to draw attention to the IU Simon Cancer Center, not only for the wonderful treatments they provide to individuals, but for their compassion and concern that they give to every single patient. They gave me a second chance at life,” Michael said.
For Michael, this is his first 24 Hours of Booty ride. Why is he participating? “Knowing there are other patients out there just like me, I want them to know that they are not alone. I want to provide them with hope and inspiration that there is light at the end of the tunnel,” he explained.