Veterans Day 2014

Veterans Day was always a significant day growing up and remains so today. I want to share with you a little about the man who instilled so much into my life, inspired me daily and was the greatest veteran a person could ever know.


My grandfather, Joseph Harold Wallace, joined the U.S. Coast Guard in May 1942. His service included assignments aboard ships in the Asiatic Pacific area, as well as the European, African and Middle Eastern area. He was released from active duty after three years and eight months of honorable service as a sonarman first class. Following his service during World War II, he was an active member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 1851, Newark, where he was post commander in 1956. Upon moving to Bayville, he transferred to V.F.W. Post 9503.

He went to the post every single day to do make it look the best it could.  Always a new landscaping project, new project in the picnic area, new coat of paint, supporting fundraisers, etc.  You name it he did it every single day (holidays too) of his life.  His fellow veterans were one of the most important people to him and were his extended family. He often referred to the VFW as “The Club.” Still to this day the Bayville VFW Post 9503 has their picnic grove named in his honor, The Joe Wallace Grove.

Throughout my years at Central Regional middle and high school he drove me so I did not have to take the bus and he was already heading that way.  I heard more stories than even his own children about the war and his time serving our great country.  When I would share some of the stories he would tell me to my mom she would often say “I never heard about that.”

I was a lucky kid growing up.  Not only did I have an amazing grandfather, who was more like my father to me, but I also learned many things about how our veterans sacrifice so much and how passionate he was about supporting the veterans when they came home.  He was truly a significant part of the “Greatest Generation” and one of the greatest, most proud veterans in history.

I miss our daily drives up Veterans Blvd and hearing the stories.

Take the time to speak to our veterans, hear the stories and honor them today and everyday.



Movember 2014 – My “Mo” is returning and I need your help


MOVEMBER 2014…..I am shaving this Movember (November) 1st and will start to grow a “Mo” for the entire month.  I look creepy with a Moustache and I do not like them, but as a 8 year testicular cancer survivor it is my mission to raise awareness, money, educate and advocate.

Please take 2 minutes to read about what Movember Foundation is doing and consider donating or joining our team.  To register is free! Remember Movember is for both men and women so please give it some consideration.

Did you know the reasons for the poor state of men’s health in the USA are numerous, complex and include:

  • Lack of awareness and understanding of the health issues men face
  • Men not openly discussing their health and how they’re feeling
  • Reluctance to take action when men don’t feel physically or mentally well
  • Men engaging in risky activities that threaten their health
  • Stigmas surrounding mental health
  • Men are 24 percent less likely than women to have visited a doctor within the past year

The Movember Foundation aims to change this way of thinking by putting a fun twist on this serious issue. Using the moustache as a catalyst, the idea is to bring about change and give men the opportunity and confidence to learn and talk about their health and take action when needed.

As a global men’s health movement, the Movember Foundation has the ambition to contribute to improving the lives of men around the world. To achieve this, we challenge men to grow moustaches during Movember (the month formerly known as November) to spark conversation and raise funds for prostate cancer, testicular cancer and mental health problems. We see success as moving the dial on progress towards:

  • Reduced mortality from prostate, testicular cancer and men’s suicide
  • Men living with prostate or testicular cancer being physically and mentally well
  • Men and boys understanding how to be mentally healthy and taking action when they experience mental health problems
  • Men and boys with mental health problems not being discriminated against

Help us make a difference in men’s health during Movember by making a donation.

Donate here:

As a 8 year testicular cancer survivor I sincerely THANK YOU for your consideration!

Local Cancer Survivor and Advocate Travels to Washington, D.C. to Push for Research Funding


Contact: Brian Dowd

Local Cancer Survivor and Advocate Travels to Washington, D.C. to Push for Research Funding

Brian Dowd Participates in One Voice Against Cancer’s (OVAC) National Lobby Day Calls for Making Cancer Research and Prevention Programs Top Priority 

BEACHWOOD, NEW JERSEY – July 14, 2014 – 25 organizations and more than 88 advocates seeking to ensure that Congress increase the funding for cancer research and prevention programs participated in One Voice Against Cancer’s (OVAC) National Lobby Day last week in Washington, D.C.  Brian Dowd joined the OVAC team on behalf of the LIVESTRONG Foundation whose mission it is to improve the lives of people affected by cancer now.

Brian from BEACHWOOD, NEW JERSEY and staff from more than 25 cancer organizations, including LIVESTRONG, walked the halls of Congress meeting with staff and representatives to make the case for increased funding for research into vitally important cancer programs.

Last year alone, approximately 750 patients were turned away from National Institute of Health (NIH) clinical centers as a result of cuts in funding.  The OVAC advocates were gathered in Washington to reach out to their local lawmakers to ask that the National Cancer Institute budget be increased to $5.26 billion; that the decline in funding for cancer research ends; and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) budget for cancer programs is increased to $510 million.

“It is important for all of us to have our voices heard by our elected lawmakers on issues of life and death and funding for cancer research and prevention is just such an issue,” said Brian.  “I was proud to join my fellow advocates and take a few days to tell the stories of cancer patients and survivors and reinforce the need for funding.  I hope that it makes a difference and that our local lawmakers are listening.” Brian met with the office of Senators Cory Booker and Robert Menendez and the offices of Congressmen Jon Runyan and Rodney Frelinghuysen.

OVAC is a collaboration of national non-profit organizations presenting millions of Americans, delivering a unified message to Congress and the White House on the need for increased cancer-related appropriations.  More than 30 LIVESTRONG advocates were part of OVAC’s National Day of Lobbying on July 7 and 8th in Washington, DC which included a total of more than 131 meetings among the entire team with the offices of elected officials.

“All offices shared their support various degrees of support to make cancer a national priority.  I was most impressed with the support showed by Senator Booker’s office.  His Legislative Assistant, Christian, was impressive to meet with,” said Brian.  “Senator Booker has been active in the area of health and cancer.  He has been in office since October 2013 and has already signed on to support many bills and priorities, such as the National Institute of Health (NIH) funding letter.”  Brian went on to say, “Cancer is a nonpartisan issue.  We are all affected by cancer in some way.  This is my third OVAC National Lobby Day. I am a cancer survivor and I will continue to meet with our elected officials in a professional, honest and constructive manner to see cancer is truly made a national priority.”

Brian Dowd is an 8 year testicular cancer survivor and has been a volunteer, fundraiser and advocate for The LIVESTRONG Foundation since his diagnosis in May 2006.  This was his third time representing The LIVESTRONG Foundation and the State of New Jersey as an OVAC delegate.

About the LIVESTRONG Foundation

The LIVESTRONG Foundation fights to improve the lives of people affected by cancer now. Created in 1997, the Foundation is known for providing free cancer support services and advocating for policies that improve access to care and quality of life. Known for its powerful brand – LIVESTRONG – the Foundation has become a symbol of hope and inspiration around the world. Since its inception, the Foundation has served 2.5 million people affected by the disease and raised more than $500 million to support cancer survivors. One of America’s top non-profit organizations, the Foundation has been recognized by industry leaders including Charity Navigator, the National Health Council and the Better Business Bureau for its excellent governance, high standards and transparency. For more information, visit


Fundraising 2013 LIVESTRONG Challenge Participation

In nine days I will be participating in a weekend of events for the LIVESTRONG Foundation. I am running the 5k on Saturday Aug 17th and then on Sunday I am riding the 50 mile course.

Please consider supporting my participation and supporting the LIVESTRONG Foundation by making a donation. Any amount is a great amount.

As you know the fight against cancer is a personal one for me and my family. I AM A CANCER SURVIVOR! LIVESTRONG was there for me back in 2006 and I spent most of my personal life volunteering and seeing that people are aware of the FREE support, services and programs they offer to ANYONE affected by cancer.

The money I raise will support programs and services for cancer survivors. These resources help people diagnosed with cancer face the challenges of the disease head on and live life on their own terms.

Please support me as I make a difference in the cancer fight through my participation in the LIVESTRONG Challenge Philly 2013.

I sincerely Thank You!

Brian Dowd

Dance with Marie Performing On Stage @ Downtown Disney

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney Opening Dance “Right Now”:

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “Where Have You Been”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “Give Your Heart a Break”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “Goin in”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “Catch My Breath”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “Down”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “We Found Love”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “DJ Got Us Falling In Love”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “Don’t Wake Me Up”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “Firework”

Dance with Marie in Downtown Disney “Feel This Moment”


SARAH STRONG! Fundraiser event details March 10th 2PM-6PM


There are times in life when the community comes together to help each other.  I ask you to please consider supporting a fundraiser which will help our friend and her family as she fights cancer. 

Sarah (Orton) Cummings is a Central Regional High School graduate, wife and mother of 4 beautiful children. 

Recently Sarah was diagnosed with breast cancer and her friends have created the Sarah Strong Foundation (TaxID: 46-1226807) to help with the medical and other expenses they are now facing during this difficult time. 

All donations will be collected on behalf of the “Sarah Strong Non-Profit Organization” and will be presented to Sarah and Joe on March 10th at the Captains Inn in Forked River, NJ from 2 pm to 6 pm. Sarah and Joe would like to let everyone know that any extra funds which are not used will be donated by them to another cancer organization close to their hearts.

Please consider attending the event Captains Inn Restaurant and Waterfront Tiki bar2pm-6pm on Sunday, March 10th, 2013.  You can purchase the $40 tickets online and if you cannot make it to the event you can make a donation.

Sarah is a strong woman, amazing mother and wife. Please support her and join us for fun, food, music, and a Trick-Tray (Chinese) auction with some prizes valued at over $1,000!

All event detail is located

Thank you for your consideration!


LIVESTRONG Day Tuesday October 2 is fast approaching

In two days it will be LIVESTRONG Day.  LIVESTRONG Day is a day of global, collective action in the fight against cancer.

What can you do to help show your support for the 2012 LIVESTRONG Day.  Here are some recommendations.  All of them cost nothing and just take a few seconds.

  1. Go to and help share your message.  To learn more about check out my video that helps explain it.
  2. WEAR-YELLOW on Tuesday, October 2, 2012 and do not forget to encourage family, friends and coworkers to WEAR-YELLOW.  Any yellow shirt or item will work.
  3. Wear your LIVESTRONG wristband
  4. Change your facebook profile and cover pictures to something about LIVESTRONG (i.e. pictures of you in LIVESTRONG gear or at an event, etc.)

If you wanted to do something bigger you could also hold an event or find one in your area

Do what you can.  Any show of support is a great show of support.  You can also make a donation  Our team is still fundraising and would like to get over $11,000 raised.  We are currently at $10,941.  Only $59 to go!

Thank you and LIVESTRONG!

My 2012 LIVESTRONG Challenge Philly Weekend

This past weekend at the Philly Challenge can be summed up in one word “UPLIFTING.”

On Friday Kristy, Caroline, Annabelle and I drove out to Blue Bell, PA for registration pick up and dinner with some Team Jersey Shore Area for LIVESTRONG members.  During registration we ran into some good friends like social media voice of LIVESTRONG Brooke Mcmillan, LIVESTRONG Leader Eric Wenner and his wife Sharon.  It is always great catching up with the LIVESTORNG family.

I registered with $5700 raised for LIVESTRONG.

We had dinner at PJ Whelihan’s near the Challenge location.  We enjoyed the few hours of laughs and conversation with Eric, Sharon and fellow LIVESTRONG Leader Bryan McMillan.  Minus Annabelle’s crankiness all had a good time – even Caroline stayed busy with coloring.

On Saturday morning we were up early for the 5K run.  We got there 1hr early and there was hardly anyone there.  Normally at this time there will be too many people there but this year it seems people came a little later.

As the announcer asked for all participants to the staging area Kristy, Caroline and Annabelle found a prime spot at the start/finish line while I went to the 5k staging area.

The 10K runners went first followed by us 5K runners/walkers.

As the start of the 5K came I was standing next to Mr. Peanut (Planters Peanuts) and that was good knowing that I was about to start of the run with two nuts J!  I could not resist saying that.

The horn sounded and we were off.  It was nice being able to see Kristy, Caroline and Annabelle as I ran by giving a “high-five” to them.  It was not too crowded but I was not able to find my pace until we made it to the road.  There I was able to run at my own pace which I was surprised to find out was a good one when seeing what others were doing.

I think my pace was really set from those around me during the 5k.  It felt great.  I ran the first mile relatively fast, my guess is sub 9 minutes.  At the 1 mile mark I slowed to a fast pace walk for about 20 seconds to catch my breath and then started to jog again.

Throughout the run I did that about 4 times.  My pace seems to be a good one, but I have yet to master my breathing where I am comfortable to keep running, but at least I never stopped.

As I came down the home stretch out of the residential area and into the college I knew I has about ¼ mile left so I just ran the best I could.  A few hundred years away from the finish line I saw one of New Jersey’s finest LIVESTRONG Leaders Tom Donner taking pictures. 

I continued on and saw my family there so I ran over and “high-fived” the girls right before crossing the finish line.  I ran in the survivor lane an received my yellow rose and then proceeded to see my family and friends as they came over. 

It was a feel good moment for sure!

Bryan proceeds to tell me I did good and was about 10 minutes behind his time which was around 27 minutes.  If this were accurate I would have run the 5k in 37 minutes which greatly surpasses my goal of 45 minutes.

I later received the information on the LIVESTRONG blog about the chip times and I ran the 5k in 34 minutes which is a sub-11 minute mile average.  This blew me away!  Feels so good knowing all the work I have been doing is paying off.

Post 5k run my right foot was extremely sore.  I could barely walk on it.  Went back to the hotel to clean up, get lunch and let the girls swim in the pool while I rested my foot.  I will admit I was getting concerns about the ride, but I was certainly still going to do it.

Saturday evening Sal Bongiorno (NJ LIVESTRONG Leader) and I attended the LIVESTRONG Challenge Philly fundraiser appreciation dinner for participants who have raised over $3,500.  It was a great event to hear some emotional and powerful experiences while loading up on carbs for the Sunday cycling event. 

A funny thing happened at dinner.  We randomly sat at a table that already had 4 people from Connecticut sitting there.  We joined them and started talking about the event and fundraising.  I go to mention to them that they should look up one of our LIVESTRONG Leaders, Roger Levesque, and sure enough one of them knew Roger and Roger told her to look at for me and other Leaders.  It’s a small world!

Sunday I was up early to meet Sal for the ride over to the Challenge ride.  Sal had to deliver one of his bikes for the VIP guest speaker to ride so we got there early.  Kristy and the girls would head over a little later so they did not need to get up too early. I told Kristy to come over around 11am as I would probably take a long time. I also told her I would text her a the rest stop around mile 12.

After parking I tested my bike in the parking lot and the gears we remaking a funny sound, but I said go for it and did not worry about it too much (OK maybe a little after breaking down in 2007.)

I met up with Tom Interlante (NJ LIVESTRONG Leader) and his family in the 20 mile staging area.  It was nice to finally meet Marge and Nicole.  We were soon joined by LIVESTRONG supporter Rose Menton and RI LIVESTRONG Leader Mary Asselin.

As the 20 mile ride started I was hyped.  All I could do is remembering breaking down in 2007 so I wanted to finish it this year.  Cross the finish line!  Feel a sense of accomplishment.  Knowing I had the hurt right foot had me doubting at the start, but I was ready.

The first 3 miles was a slow go.  People were bunched up and I was trying to stay with Tom I. and Mary.  I found myself being able to go faster so rather than stay slow I went at it by myself.  I felt bad for leaving Tom and Mary, but one thing people like Sal and Tom D. have told me is “go at your own pace.  Thus I was off.

The first half was relatively easy.  There was only one hill which got the better of me as I had to jump off and run the remaining 20 feet and jump back on the bike and start peddling.  It was funny seeing some of the diehard cyclist jump off so at that point I did not feel so bad, but I also said to myself not to get off again.

After my fight with the hill I did great.  I made up time and passed a ton of people and though it is not a race it did feel good to make up the ground I lost.  I realized at mile 12 that was making very good time, much better than I told Kristy.  So good that I skipped the rest stop and kept going.  I also did not text her.

The way back on Morris road had several large uphill climbs, but none more challenging then the one hill I had faced earlier.  I rode the last 8 miles with a woman whom I never met.  We briefly spoke, but it was great to have someone with a similar cadence/pace as me on the way back.  As we came up to DeKalb Pike I asked her what her name was.  She said it was Sharon.  I said “Hello Sharon.  My name is Brian Dowd.  It was nice riding with you.”

That is when I saw the police officer waiving us on to cross so I sped up to 25MPH as I crossed the rode towards the Challenge location.

As I entered the finish line area I was overcome with excitement and joy.  I was about to complete and cross the finish line of an event that has meant so much to me over the year, but I never finished it when truly competing in it.

I gave a high-five to LIVESTRONG supporter and Challenge volunteer Rich Ehrmann right before crossing the finish line and getting my second yellow rose of the weekend.

It was right at the time of getting the yellow rose that I realized that I finished this much fater than I though.  I looked at my active time on my bike and it said 1 hr 38 mins.  I immediately went down to get some water and call Kristy to tell her.

As it turned out Kristy, Caroline and Annabelle were sitting at the light of DeKalb Pike when flew by doing 25MPH.  They were able to see me.

I waited for them to park and come by and gave out lots of hugs once I saw them.  Nothing better than seeing them and the shock on their face that I completed it so fast.  Though I would have loved seeing them at the finish line I must say blowing away my own expectations for my completion time more than made up for it.

That made two days in a row I exceeded my own expectations.  I hope to do it again next year, but until then I have a Mud Run to get ready for in September.

I walk away blown away by another inspiring and empowering weekend.  Thank you to LIVESTRONG staff and volunteers for the great job this past weekend.

Jersey LIVESTRONG Mudders: Bill Bottino Mud Run – Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Jersey LIVESTRONG Mudders are looking for some dirty people!!!!

South Jersey for LIVESTRONG and Jersey Shore Area Supporting the Lance Armstrong Foundation have combined once again (We participated in the LIVESTRONG Challenge Philly and raised over $10,940) to enter the battle grounds and fight cancer and we need your help!!!! We are looking for team members to join our fight and get a little dirty while we do it.

The Bill Bottino Mud Run is Saturday, September 15, 2012 for 3.5 miles of muddy, mucky, obstacle challenges and most of all, fun! This is a family-friendly event!! There is a kids mud run, tailgate, cash bar, live music and BBQ. There is a clean version (BBQ only) and volunteer signup for those who don’t like playing in the mud.

JOIN OUR TEAM (open to everyone)!! You do not need to live in NJ to be on the team.

1) visit
2) Select how you want to register (online or mail)
3) Follow the registration steps as an “Individual/Team Member
4) Select “Jersey LIVESTRONG Mudders” from the drop down menu
*no password needed, leave that field blank
5) Continue the registration process and you’re done!!!

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at: 

******************DETAILS OF THE MUD RUN****************

The Mud Run for Cancer Starts with a Mud Crawling, Perseverance Requiring, Multiple Skill Obstacle Course That Will Reward You With A Sense Of Accomplishment and An Extremely Good Time!

Our Course Feature 3.5 Miles of: 
-Multiple Insane Mud Pits!
-Steep, Slick, Hill Climbs
-Bold Obstacles That Will Test All Your Abilities
-Challenges Requiring Cooperation with Your Fellow Mudders
-Water, and Other Types, of Crossings
-A Well Organized Course with Minimal Lines
-Easy Lanes and “Prove Yourself” Lanes (Where Appropriate)
-Our Final, Signature, Main-Stage, Crowd Screaming, Finale 
Your Mud Run Ticket also earns you: 
– A Rousing Party Featuring The Most Mouth-Watering BBQ You Ever Tasted
-Superb Live Music
-The Opportunity to Earn Awards for:
-Best Fundraising Individual/Team
-Best Costumed Team
-Most Represented Team
-Our Awesome Event T-Shirt
-The Ability to Honor Cancer Survivors Through Our Moving Candle-Light Walk 
This Ticket is Appropriate For: 
-Teams of Any Size Who Are In It To Have Fun – Not To Compete
-Individual Mud Runners
-Kids above the age of 10 register for the 3.5 mile mud run:
-If they are under the age of 14, a registered supervising adult must run with them or their team, they also must adhere to all rules given by the race director which may include restrictions on “tougher” obstacles.
-If they 14 -17 years old a parent does not have to run with them but one must be on the premises (they do not have to register).
-All registered persons are eligible for the BBQ and shirt with their registration. 
-All instructions given by the race director must be followed.
-Good sportsmanship must be maintained at all times.
-It is NOT necessary for a team to finish together.
-The race director may modify the course for the safety of the participants.
-It is NOT necessary to complete all the obstacles. 
Be Sure to Bring: 
-Your ID
-Your Costume!
-Sturdy Shoes
-Clothes That Can Get Dirty
-Your Own Towel…And A Change of Clothes
-Your Appetite!
-A Sense of Adventure and a Team Focused Attitude!