DERRY — It’s been five years when Susan Mollohan got the news she had Parkinson’s disease.
The Derry woman had known something just wasn’t right when she experienced trembling in her right hand while on the job as a dean at Alvirne High School.
Months later, she got the official diagnosis.
Since then, Mollohan has forged ahead to support those battling Parkinson’s, raising money to fund research and other patient services.
As a major advocate for the Michael J. Fox foundation, Mollohan wanted to put her own face on this degenerative and incurable disease.
Mollohan and husband Steven have organized a variety of fundraising efforts through the years, including her regular participation in the New England Parkinson’s Ride, writing a book detailing her own journey with the disease, and acting as a cheerleader for others who need support.
She will ride again in this year’s Parkinson’s Ride in Maine with a bigger goal in sight — to ride 100 miles in the September event.
This is a personal goal. Her typical bike ride is about 20 to 30 miles. Her bike is a special model allowing her to shift gears more easily. Mollohan said she’s ready to overcome any obstacles to get the ride complete.
Mollohan has also started training for a series of Parkinson’s awareness rides in all six New England states. Her hope is to connect with local cycling groups and organizations to schedule rides, giving her a forum to generate interest and get more people involved.
Mollohan is hosting a fundraising event June 1 at Whippersnappers in Londonderry. The night, “Pasties for Parkinson’s” features music, Middle Eastern dancing, a burlesque troupe, guitarist/vocalist Nicole Murphy, Scratch and the Boston Baby Dolls and gymnastics and aerialists.
The night also features other unique dance troupes and stand-up comedy.
Admission is $25 and 100 percent of event proceeds will benefit Parkinson’s research. The night kicks off at 6 p.m. with dinner. Entertainment runs from 7 to 10 p.m.