Julie Vallier said she was in shock as her doctor broke the news that after years of tests, her medical diagnosis was Friedreich’s ataxia — FA.

“I thought, okay, what is that? I had never heard of it. Then he said there is no treatment and no cure. I could see his lips move, but I couldn’t hear him,” Vallier said.

On July 21, Vallier was among the 300 people who traveled to Central Park in Channahon to ride one of five cycling trails as a part of the FA research fundraiser rideATAXIA Chicago. This was the eighth time that race founder Kyle Bryant held the event in Channahon.

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