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Published on September 24, 2018

For the run of it: Going the distance to fight cancerFor the run of it: Going the distance to fight cancer

Patrick Lentell has been organizing successful road races and cycling tours for several years through his Sports Events Management Company. The proceeds have benefitted local nonprofits, but it wasn’t until he was diagnosed with cancer that his charitable efforts hit home.

Lentell, 71, of Cotuit, underwent prostate surgery earlier this year and in August received the good news that he is cancer free. He’s feeling well and back spinning, cycling and jogging.

And now he is also returning with a renewed commitment to helping organizations raise funds. Lentell’s next event is the Race to Hope on Saturday, Oct. 6 in Hyannis. The 5K (3.1 miles) and 10K (6.2 miles) road races and walks will be held at Cape Cod Beer on Phinneys Lane.

Prize money and trophies will be awarded to the top finishers and there is be a post-race party with entertainment.

The proceeds from Race to Hope will benefit the Davenport-Mugar Cancer Center of Cape Cod Healthcare and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Lentell is hoping to get 600 participants (850 is the limit) and make donations of at least $5,000 to each.

“This one is personal,” said Lentell. “After what I’ve been through, I’m motivated more than ever to supporting and helping others.”

Lentell’s health ordeal began in January, 2017, when he contracted the painful shingles virus. A reaction to sleep medication caused him to fall and injure his spine. In April of 2017, a regular check-up and PSA (prostate-specific antigen) test showed abnormalities. A biopsy determined he had prostate cancer. The next month he had a cycling accident and injured his hip.

Further exams, including a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan at Cape Cod Hospital Radiology, indicated spots on his spine and hip were feared to be bone cancer. Fortunately, the prostate cancer hadn’t spread, but the tests did reveal a fracture of the lower spine (from the January fall) and a broken left hip (from the bike mishap).

Lentell had hip replacement surgery in September, 2017, and then an operation in January this year to remove the prostate. Doctors at Cape Cod Hospital Pain Center recommended rest for the spinal fracture, which proved successful.

Grateful For Care

Lentell is grateful for all the care he received from his primary physician, Dr. William Fenney of Cape Cod Internal Medicine, and all of the doctors who cared for him.

Lentell will be assisted in the Race to Hope by Guy Morse of Centerville, also a cancer survivor. Morse is the retired race director of the Boston Marathon and a longtime friend of philanthropist David Mugar through his former position with the Boston Athletic Association. Morse suggested that Lentell include the Davenport-Mugar Cancer Center and as a beneficiary.

“We’re all in this together,” said Morse. “It’s a collaboration and we’re all better for the great work everyone is doing. Certainly, as cancer survivors, Pat and I can speak to that. I’m volunteering to help in any way I can. I’m a fan of Cape Cod Healthcare and always ready to support its mission and positive impact in the community.”

The Davenport-Mugar Center bears the family names of well-known local philanthropists.

Since their inception, the Davenport Companies family and its employees have given back the community. The Palmer & Jane D. Davenport Foundation was established in 2007 to improve the health and quality of life for people living on Cape Cod and the Islands.

Likewise, the Mugar family for generations has been committed to helping others through support of annual events and gifts to heath care and educational institutions. Patriarch Stephen P. Mugar passed away in 1982, but his legacy of giving has continued through his son, David, who has a home in Cotuit, and Mugar Enterprises and the Mugar Foundation.