Meet Ian Glenn, Twin Cities Route Safety Captain


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All photos via Ian Glenn

With Father’s Day coming up this weekend, we wanted to make sure to recognize all the men, whether they are fathers or not, who make up our 3-Day family. One such amazing guy is Ian Glenn, Twin Cities Route Safety Captain, husband, father and all-around super 3-Dayer.

When Ian began dating his now-wife Missy in 2005, she was already a 3-Day walker, and she brought him into the 3-Day family. Year by year, Ian became even more involved.

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“After a few years of being the Day 1 chauffeur, I joked with Missy that the only way I’d seriously consider participating was if I could ride my motorcycle on the event as a crew member. She didn’t miss a beat when she told me that the safety crew had bicycles and motorcycles on it. I knew that she was always excited leading up to the event, and had nothing but good things to say about it after, so I had no choice but to try to get on the route safety crew.”

After Ian joined the safety crew, the whole family started getting involved, beginning with their oldest son Gaven and now including their daughter Alex, both of whom are in the Youth Corps.

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“I think it’s fantastic that the event is accessible to all ages, and we can include our kids in something that is bigger than us, and bigger than our family. It has been a good lesson for them that working for the greater good, and giving of themselves in service to others, is incredibly rewarding. I think too, that it has gone a long way for us to have something shared amongst our family, something that will continue to bring us together year after year, no matter how old the kids get.”

Whether they are walking or volunteering or crewing, Ian and his family know the true value of the 3-Day crew, and want others to join them this year!

“As a longtime crew member, I can say that volunteering your time on the crew is vital to the success and atmosphere of the event. Having crew members smiling, and cheering, and being there to support the walkers when they’re tired, and their feet hurt, and they’re hot, it just makes their day. We’re there to support the walkers on their journey and let them know that they’re appreciated, and we support what they’re doing. The can-do attitude of the crew makes the hard work not so hard, and even fun.”

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If you want to walk those 60 miles though, the Glenn family won’t be the only ones cheering you on. Ian says that no one should be nervous about starting their 3-Day walking journey.

“I think making the leap as a walker is scary, but incredibly rewarding. There are lots of resources in your participant center on training, and packing, and general help. If you reach out on social media, you won’t find a more caring, supportive group of people to meet and go on training walks, or fundraising tips, or even shoe recommendations.”

That support and community have extended beyond the online community and into their lives.

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“Many of our longtime friends we’ve met on the 3-Day and continue to have contact with them all the time. It’s a physical and mental challenge, there’s no doubt, but with the right support, a new walker can do it, and have a great time too.”

It’s more than just fun and family for Ian. Though his three days and many miles of service are an investment, he does them gladly, to make a difference for his family and beyond.

“It’s a satisfied feeling that is hard to put into words. After the long weekend, and the work is over, I find myself renewed every year, and I am reminded that despite everything that is going on in the world, there are lots of great people who care about big causes, and have committed to support them any way they can.

The walkers and other crew give me way more every year than I feel I give back, but I think the feeling is mutual, and that’s why I keep coming back.”

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Don’t count the Glenn family out of their involvement anytime soon either! There are more Glenns to come as 3-Day volunteers and walkers.

“Our almost 9-year-old is practically counting the days until he can apply for Youth Corps. It’s rewarding  to see that enthusiasm from all our kids for something that doesn’t directly benefit them.”



Part 3 of the ABC’s of the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Crew

Welcome to part three of the ABC’s of the Komen 3-Day Crew! We’ve shared letters A – E, F – J and this week, we’re excited to present letters K through O. We invite you to tell us your ideas for each letter here or on Facebook, and to share these images with your family and friends. (To see the 3-Day walker version of the ABC’s, click here!)


susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog ABC's of the 3-Day crew kindnessThe 3-Day is a place where crew members go above and beyond to show kindness in everything they do. They work long hours and get little sleep. They work together, with strangers for the good of a common cause. They’re ready for anything that could pop up at any time. Being on the 3-Day is like living in a perfect world for three days: kindness, goodwill, adventure and the joy of working towards one amazing goal – ending breast cancer forever.

See also: Knife (This may seem like an odd thing to spotlight on the ABC’s, but many veteran crew members would agree about the importance of a good cutting tool. Whether it’s for opening the dozens of boxes of packaged food at pit stops, quickly slicing through zip ties to take down route arrows, or cutting apart cardboard for walkers to sit on at lunch, having a good knife is important for a lot of the crew.)


susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog ABC's of the 3-Day crew liftingBeing a 3-Day crew member is not an easy alternative to walking. Many crew jobs require great physical demands from team members, including heavy lifting. This could include loading luggage onto gear trucks, moving bags of ice or boxes of food, or even setting up the large tent structures in camp.

See Also: Lasting Memories (You’ll make lots of them!); Legacy Pins


susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog ABC's of the 3-Day crew motorcyclesSome of the coolest looking crew members you’ll see are on the Route Safety crew. They’re the ones on motorcycles, patrolling the route to ensure safety and monitoring intersections to make sure walkers get safely across. And if those motorcycles are occasionally wearing giant pink bras, then you know you’re on the 3-Day for sure.

See Also: Medical Crew


susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog ABC's of the 3-Day crew nursesThe 3-Day medical crew is made up of Doctors, PAs, NPs, RNs, LVNs/LPNs and EMTs (Basic and Paramedic), ready to lend their professional expertise in service of the walkers.


susan g. komen 3-Day breast cancer walk blog ABC's of the 3-Day crew opening ceremonyWhen you arrive for the Opening Ceremony on Friday morning, the 3-Day crew teams have already been up for hours, directing traffic, loading your gear, setting up pit stops and much more. Many crew teams will attend the Opening Ceremony and be there to cheer the walkers out, but then it’s right back to work!


What other words can you think of for these letters? How about for P,Q,R,S, and T? Tell us here in the comments or on Facebook or Twitter!

Bras, Tutus, and Harleys

Most of the motorcycle-riding contingent of the Route Safety Crew pose for a photograph at the Opening Ceremony on the Atlanta 3-Day (bicycle riders not shown)

No one will argue that Harley Davidson owners form some of the most closely-knit communities in America (and abroad!), but the Harley Davidson owners who decorate their prized motorcycles in pink bras form an even tighter and more colorful subset of the riders of the open road. And where exactly do you spot such an elusive group? It’s definitely not at Sturgis.

This weekend, it’s in Atlanta at the Susan G. Komen 3-Day®.

Robin awaits for the Komen 3-Day to get under way in Atlanta

Robin awaits for the Komen 3-Day to get under way in Atlanta

All over the country, however, riders like Robin Davis, a policeman from Virginia, suit up in the wildest of pink attire, pimp out their rides in bras, beads, and tutus, and take to the routes of the 3-Day walkers to provide road safety for the hundreds and hundreds who are walking to help end breast cancer. “Years ago, my friend asked me to do the walk. After seeing that I could volunteer on my bike, I was hooked,” said Robin, gearing up for this week’s Atlanta 3-Day, which started this morning. “I have two aunts who are breast cancer survivors, my wife walks the fundraiser, and my son is involved in Youth Corps [youth volunteer group].” And as every Harley is unique, Robin has the names of his friends, fallen law enforcement officers, detailed on his front panel. Around the sides and front are the corresponding views of the Police National Law Enforcement Officer Memorial.

Paula, a Harley-riding route safety crew member, preps her ride with its customary pink outfit for the Atlanta 3-Day

The full Route Safety Crew is also made up of dedicated cyclists who cover the entire course and especially areas on trails and backroads where motorcycles and cars cannot go. They deserve some special attention in their own article. The entire Route Safety Crew does a remarkable job on both motorcycle and bicycle in keeping 1,000 walkers safe over 60 miles. What a feat!

And while I used to think most of the breast cancer survivors were walkers, that is not the case. They make up a large contingent of the “crew,” the machinery of volunteers who make the event run. A pink SURVIVOR patch emblazoned on one Harley rider affirmed this. “I actually signed up to help with the 3-Day® before I got breast cancer,” said Paula from Atlanta. “I lost my mom to breast cancer, and I am a two-time survivor!” Paula and her husband Lyle have provided route safety for nine events, eight of which have been in Atlanta. Paula carefully decorates her Harley with pink tutus, explaining to a novice like me that her “Softtail” just refers to the soft leather saddle bags.  Lyle’s are hard saddlebags, perfect for writing “Chemo Sucks!” in pink tape and derogatory terms, appropriate for both a solid biker and for someone who hates breast cancer.

Susan G. Komen 3-Day walkers cross the street that is guarded by a bra-wrapped motorcycle

Sam, the crew captain of this helpful group of riders, has been protecting  3-Day walkers for some time. Sam’s mother is a 15-year breast cancer survivor, and she walked the 60 miles several years ago: “When I found out I could volunteer with my Harley, I couldn’t stop! This is my 17th event.” The walkers should feel safe this weekend with this motley group of professionals. Besides Robin, there are two Atlanta-area policemen on the crew, and not all with Harley’s. To be fair, they are very accepting of other bikes: BMWs, Triumphs, and Hondas all have a place in this lineup, “but we still give them a hard time” says one Harley owner.

Earl throws down his own style on his Honda, complete with fresh decals with pink running ribbon of the breast cancer fight

“It’s OK if you don’t have a Harley,” quips Danny. “They’re known for leaking some, but the ‘sport’ bikes have batteries that die.” The joking among the group is similar everywhere in the world among bikers, but it’s all in good fun. By the time they have enough bras on them, you can’t really tell anyway.

(Thanks to all of the Route Safety Crew on the Atlanta 3-Day: Christopher, Gene, Kerri, Michael B, Krystal, Jerry, Barbara, Grant, Theresa, Paula C, Gary C, Andy, Glenn, Richard, Danny, Earl, Albert, Michael K, Kirk, Laure, Sam, Lisa, Leslie, Charles, Lyle, Paula, Gary W, Pamela W)


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