By Bob Behre
Chris Suseck was always one of those relentlessly stubborn competitors on a baseball diamond who made his team better. The former Diamond Jack and 2016 Rutgers University grad has taken that aggressive nature to the fight against rare forms of cancer.
Suseck, his family, friends and hundreds of other volunteers will descend upon the Equinox fitness center in Manhattan on Saturday to peddle away on stationary bikes for “Cycle for Survival,” an organization formed to fight rare cancers. About 50 percent of all cancers are considered rare.
“After my grandfather, Myron Suseck, died after a battle with a rare cancer in 2001, my older sister, Lauren, became involved with Cycle for Survival,” said Chris Suseck. “One thing led to another and more family and friends joined us. It’s been an amazing experience.”
Suseck says his family’s 25-30 person team, Suseck’s Swans, steered by team captain Lauren, will compete in the 10 a.m.-2 p.m. time slot on Saturday, looking to pile up mileage and out-distance their fellow competitors while aiding Cycle for Survival’s financial fight against rare cancers. Joining the fight with the Suseck's Swans are Chris' brother Dan, sister Nicole and parents Ileana and Mark.
“It’s a very cool atmosphere at Equinox and we’re all there fighting the fight against cancer,” said Suseck, who has been part of the Diamond Nation family since he was 11 years-old and returned to coach in the Diamond Jack program, giving back the lessons he learned as a youngster at the Flemington, N.J. facility.
Cycle for Survival organizes high-energy indoor team cycling events nationally and 100 percent of donations collected go to cancer research. Click here (http://mskcc.convio.net/site/TR/CycleforSurvival/CycleforSurvival?pg=team&fr_id=3231&team_id=64958) to donate to the Suseck’s Swans before, during or after Saturday’s event, through March 30.
“We are so thankful for all of those who have joined this fight with us ,” said Suseck. "It means the world."
The talented infielder started two years at Rutgers after transferring from Coastal Carolina. Such was his knack for leadership, Suseck was named a team captain both his junior and senior years as a Scarlet Knight. Prior to that he was a critical part of Hunterdon Central High School teams that won two NJSIAA Group 4 championships during his four years (2008-’11) at the Flemington school.