Harlingen Man Cycles 305 Miles to Raise Awareness

After visiting several doctors and struggling to figure out what was wrong with her, 54-year-old Donna Zoerner was relieved to find out she had Rheumatoid Arthritis.

"Well anyone who is old enough, you're going to have arthritis right?" Zoerner thought.

But little did she know the pain that the diagnosis really entailed.

Rheumatoid Arthritis is one of the most severe forms of arthritis, an autoimmune disease.

Zoerner said her body is constantly attacking itself, effecting from joints to organs, and leaving her in excruciating pain, "every hour of (her) life, just all the time." Zoerner said she's isolated herself due to the effects of the medication and the disease, especially since she hasn't found a support group in the area to help her cope, or even people who know about the disease. In hopes of changing that, her son Kenny Rubio, a former Harlingen Cardinal football player and now tri-athlete, has taken things into his own hands. He embarked on a journey on his cycling bike from Austin to his parent's business, the City Barber Shop in Harlingen.

"I'm really proud of him, Zoerner said. I appreciate it and I just wish that people would be aware of it because we hide ourselves in our home - all of us do - because like I said, it's just easier to just isolate yourself." Zoerner said her son's inspirational bike ride, has given her new hope and she's even started a web site,, for all those going through the pain.

"I want to start an RA group, and not just lock myself up in the house, (I want to) start doing things again, as much as I can."