Hi, my name is Tonja Petticrew and I am a proud Colorado Native. I began volunteering with the Love Hope Strength Foundation this summer at local music events in Colorado. My goal is to hike to the top Pike’s Peak, “America’s Mountain”, on July 31, 2010 (the day after my 40th birthday). This will be my fifth 14er – with the hope to some day summit all 54 of them. This is the most visited mountain in North America and the second most visited mountain in the world behind Japan’s Mount Fuji. Certainly, hiking can be hard, physically and mentally; yet it’s something I love to do and, for reasons yet undiscovered, I continue to return to the mountains again and again. Hiking to the top of a mountain is a personal event. You rely on your own strength to actually go up to the top, but getting there improves your mental wellbeing.

Forty is a semiperfect number … and my 40th birthday should be a time to celebrate all the good things I have done. I am making plans to do even bigger and better things over the next 40 years. While taking a few pictures along the way. It only takes a little time to do a lot of good. Sometimes we become so consumed by our daily lives that we forget to take a look at the larger picture of who we are and where we are headed in life. So I hope I can make a difference on July 31st, with your support.

We all need to get active. Exercise is one of the best things you can do for your overall health, and also help reduce your risk of cancer.

It has been shown that music has a positive impact on the body, mind, and spirit of humans.

There is a study that found music therapy improved comfort, relaxation, and pain control.

Other clinical trials have revealed a reduction in heart rate, blood pressure, breathing rate, insomnia, depression, and anxiety with music therapy. No one knows all the ways music can benefit the body, but studies have shown that music can positively affect brain waves, brain circulation, and stress hormones.

Cancer begins when cells in a part of the body start to grow out of control. There are many kinds of cancer, but they all start because of out-of-control growth of abnormal cells. Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States. Half of all men and one-third of all women in the US will develop cancer during their lifetimes. Today, millions of people are living with or have had cancer.

I am doing Pike’s Peak Rocks in support of all the brave, optimistic people I know who have done everything they can to beat cancer. So they could spend more time with their friends and family. At the same time I will be thinking of amazing people that have moved on from this world.

A climber named Rene Daumal, was once asked in an interview why he was stupid enough to risk his life to climb a treacherous peak. He said, “You cannot stay on the summit forever; you have to come down again…so why bother in the first place? Just this: what is above knows what is below, but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs, one sees. One descends, one sees no longer, but one has seen. There is an art to conducting oneself in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up. When one can no longer see, one can at least still know.”

Celebrate. Remember. Fight Back. Save Lives. Fulfill Yours.

My theme song — Climb Ev’ry Mountain