Bonnie McDonald on Giving Purpose to Tragedy


Backcountry Lifeline was founded in August 2015, following a crash on Stage 3 of the Big Mountain Enduro Series and Enduro World Series in Crested Butte, CO, in which 40-year old Will Olson died. Will was an expert rider favored to win the series, and to those who founded backcountry lifeline, he was a respected fellow rider, friend, and beloved fiancé. His death rocked the bike community, and support poured in from around the globe. 

Today, Bonnie McDonald, Will's fiancé Bonnie McDonald joins us to discuss loss and how to make some sense out of it  - with some purpose and drive and the occasional days in the fetal position.  

Currently. there is no standard in mountain biking events and quite honestly, the mountain bike industry is behind others. It’s time to change that. Bonnie and the team at Backcountry Lifeline would like to help lead the way and shift the conversation on safety and medical support in the mountain biking community in general.

Be sure and stay to the end. Just as I was about to wrap up and say goodbye, Bonnie shared some of the unintended beauty, collateral beauty as it’s known, in this tragedy. It’s heartbreaking and beautiful. I considered editing and bringing this piece of the conversation forward into the episode but it goes exactly where it is, a fitting end. 

Let’s listen in gear up for what’s next. 

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Have questions? Guest suggestions? I’d love to hear from you. Contact me here or in the comments below. 

Where to Find Bonnie

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