Susan “sooz” Wieszczek was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2007, and feels fortunate to be a have been a Machestic since 2013. She has been a member of the Board of Trustees since 2014, and President of the Board since 2017. She cherishes the time spent on the lake with her friends and sisters, and wouldn’t give it up for anything. In 2014 and 2018, she was lucky enough to travel to the International Breast Cancer festivals in Florida and Italy. Traveling with the team and meeting new people in fantastic places is just one of the many perks of being a Machestic Dragon.
In her spare time, Sooz cooks, drinks good booze, and spends time with her beloved husband, Mike, and their two sons.
(Laurie) “Roe” joined the Machestic Dragons in 2012 with her son and enjoyed paddling with him and the team. Members have become like family and those relationships are treasured for sure. After teaching Health and Phys Ed for a short time, Roe worked as a paramedic for 12 years until diagnosed with breast cancer in 2000. She continued to work in the healthcare field until present.
Roe took on the role of Administrator to the Board of Trustees in 2013 to help the organization move into the age of technology and be the main resource for operational tasks.Roe attended the first official US Dragon Boat Coaching Certification course in 2015 and has been coaching the team since 2016. Serious lymphedema from surgery and treatment often made it difficult to paddle and coaching the team is a role that fits perfect with her background and the team’s needs.
Susan Benjamin aka Sue B has been a Machestic Dragon since 2014 and a member of the Board of Trustees since 2015 as the recording secretary. Susan was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013. Joining the Machestic Dragons has filled a void and offered invaluable friendships. The time spent in the boat is filled with laughter, team spirit and dedication. In her spare time, she loves to spend as much time as she can with her daughters, sons in law and grandchildren.
Born in Ithaca, NY and living in Buffalo for almost 20 years after college, Marie and her husband now live in Warrington Pa and have three adult children. She is a 17 year survivor. Marie has worked for Central Bucks School District as an aide in Special Ed since 2009. She also has a side business making memory quilts since 2010.
Marie served one year on the board as a member as the race Committee liaison and has been Vice President since 2017, co-chairing the Paddle for Pink Volunteer Committee since the 2019 season.
Taking various exercise classes 6 days a week, Marie finds the best part of being in the boat is getting a good work out, fresh air with peaceful scenery while enjoying laughs and tears with a strong group of women who do not judge and always encourage each other to be their best! It is not about winning a race it's about personal goals and enjoying the success in reaching them!
Roberta has been a member of the Machestic Dragons since 2013 and a member of the Board since 2017. During this time, she has volunteered in several capacities for the team, managing the Volunteers for two years for Paddle for Pink; re-writing brochures and grant applications; and assisting with all fundraising efforts.
As a breast cancer survivor for more than seven years, Roberta has experienced the friendship and support of her fellow survivors and loves being on the boat with teammates. “Early evening paddling, especially in late summer, can be magical, with the sun hanging low in the sky and eagles in the trees. It is more than a physical activity, it is spiritual, too.”
In addition to her work with the Machestic Dragons, Roberta also has volunteered with BCRC and HomeFront.
Kathy joined the Machestics in 2018 and accepted an invitation to join the Board in 2019.
Kathy was diagnosed with breast cancer in late 2010 and was very fortunate that it was found early through a routine mammogram. She required a lumpectomy and radiation, followed by five years of tamoxifen. Kathy had great support from family and friends, though to meet the Machestics brought support and camaraderie to a whole new level. An athlete when she was younger, Kathy reports that she was far from one when she joined the team. It didn’t matter. Everyone was warm and welcoming. Every new person who joins needs to learn the technique of dragon boat paddling. Everyone has that learning curve. Everyone is helped and encouraged. Don’t let “not knowing” stop you from giving it a try!
Kathy is a retired social worker, having spent her career in child protection. She now takes every opportunity to travel the world.