CASA Cycle Tour Profile: Peter O'Brien

Cyclist Peter O’Brien is the picture of dedication. He is cycling both the Van Isle and Southern Alberta legs of the #CASAcycletour this year in memory of his late wife, Rachel.

Pre-pandemic, they were both signed up for the cycle tours. Sadly, Rachel lost her battle with melanoma in April 2020.

“When the dust settled and the rides were able to happen this year, CASA asked me if I would ride on Rachel’s behalf,” says Peter. “I am super honoured to do that, especially given the number of Rachel’s friends who will be along for this tour.”

“Rachel’s journey with melanoma and immune therapy gave us seven years after her diagnosis,” he adds. “That is the difference between our youngest child having been 14 when she lost her mom, versus 21. When I think of what that would have been like for my 14-year-old, I can’t help but feel like we would have needed to lean hard on CASA for support. I will continue to help in any way I can to support the cause.”

This will be Peter’s 11th ride, and he’s anticipating navigating some difficult emotions throughout the route.

“Every day on these rides brings special moments, and I anticipate some roller coasters on this year’s ride, as it will be the first without Rachel along,” he says.

“The community of cycling friends that has been there for me over the last year is staggering. Every day I can find someone to ride with who fully understands what this past year has been for me. I am so excited about spending a few weeks hanging out with them after such a long break between tours.”

To sponsor Peter or donate to the Van Isle tour that starts on Saturday, visit