rides for cancer fundraiser
to ride from
Louisville to Lexington, Ky.
Lela Jane Bradshaw
(May 2009) When a cancer survivor hits the
milestone of being one year cancer free, it is natural to look for a
way to celebrate the accomplishment.
cycle in the The
Ride to Conquer
Cancer, on Sept. 26-27
and will cover 150 miles.
Deciding to embark on a 150-mile bicycle ride might be
one of the more unusual ways to commemorate such good news. However,
that is exactly what Madison, Ind., cyclist and cancer survivor Tom
Pritchard has done. He signed up for the Ride to Conquer Cancer
after becoming inspired by television and radio ads announcing the charity
It looks like it will be a very fun event, Pritchard, 57,
The Ride to Conquer Cancer will take place Sept. 26-27 and
will cover 150 miles with riders cycling 75 miles from Louisville to
Lexington and then back again.
Money raised will go toward funding Norton Cancer Institute programs
including therapy and cure research as well as prevention programs and
screenings. Those interested in becoming involved can sign up to ride
themselves or can donate money in support of other riders. Pritchard
has set a goal of raising $2,500 through his ride.
For me, Im probably looking at between six and eight hours
riding the 75, Pritchard explains. On the first day the riders
will go from Louisville to Lexington, and then Sunday we will
reverse the route, all the hills we got to go down we now have to go
back up! he laughs. Upon arrival back in Louisville, the riders
will be welcomed by family and friends.
A lot of people cheer, says Pritchard, Those who are
cancer survivors will have a flag that we will carry. It will be a pretty
nice thing to see.
Pritchard is no stranger to long hours on his bike as an enthusiastic
member of the Madison Area Bicycle Club. I ride to work a lot
when the weather permits, he explains, describing the various
routes he takes to his job at Clifty Engineering.I try to get
1,000 miles a year if I can, and he aims for a least one 100 mile
ride each year.
As an avid cyclist, Pritchard is undaunted by the distance of the ride.
Instead, he reflects,My biggest concern, one thing being
able to raise the money with the way the economy is right now.
So far he has been finding success with an e-mail campaign, and donations
have also been coming in through the events website. Its
really convenient to go to to the webpage. Ive been getting $25,
$50, $100 donations, he reports. Pritchard has experience with
similar fund raising events, having previously participated in the MS-150,
a ride from Cincinnati to Louisville that raised money for multiple
While such a ride is a great challenge, Pritchards eagerness to
get involved in a good cause is certainly no surprise to those who know
him. For the past several years, his love of community service and cycling
have inspired his work with the Madison Heritage Trail, a project that
aims to provide a safe walking and biking link between downtown and
Karen Bump, who originated the idea of the project back in the mid-1990s,
says of Pritchard, Hes been instrumental Id say in
getting the trail where it is today. He has a passion for bike riding
and the community. Hes been a very tireless supporter.
Bob Greene, who serve as the Trail Volunteer Project coordinator says
of Pritchard: His long-term dedication and enthusiasm have been
vital to the development of the Trail. Even from his hospital bed, when
I visited him last year at the IU Medical Center, he displayed his indomitable
spirit by expressing his determination to recover as soon as possible
and continue his involvement with the Heritage Trail.
Pritchard currently serves as president of the Heritage Trail Project.
The Ride to Conquer Cancer allows Pritchard to combine his
love of biking with a way to support a cause in which he holds a personal
stake. Ive always been involved in cycling and thought it
would be a good way to give back.
To donate to Tom Pritchards fundraising
efforts or to learn more about the Ride to Conquer Cancer, visit www.RideToVictory.org
and search for his name under Sponsor a Participant. For
more information on the Heritage Trail or to volunteer, contact Bob
Greene at (317) 696-0860 or via e-mail at: RobertRGreene@gmail.com.
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