11/23/2014

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Travel & Outdoors

Facing death, cyclist chooses to live

Facing death, cyclist chooses to live

EUGENE, Ore. - There are two sled dogs by his side, but Randolph Westphal is leading the way.

He's a "take control" kind of guy.

Like in 1987, when he was diagnosed with a high stage of malignant melanoma.

"I decided not to die," Westphal said. "I was 29 years old. It was too early to die."

When he found out about the cancer, he decided to take off on his bike.

"I went on the road," he said, "and the idea was to die on the road."

Now 55, Westphal has biked around the world 5 times, endured 28 cancer surgeries - and picked up a new mission in life after facing death.

"I like to inspire people," he said. "I say to people, 'don't sit in the corner and wait for your death. Open your eyes and lift up your head. The world is beautiful."

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