2012 Ride for Kids: Middle Tennessee and Louisiana
Ride for Kids participants in Tennessee and Louisiana enjoyed sunny skies and the warmth that comes with helping children in need yesterday. Together they raised $132,640 for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation (PBTF).
Making a difference in Middle Tennessee
Jack, Jessica and Makenzie were the stars of the fourth Middle Tennessee Ride for Kids, which raised $109,800 for the PBTF on May 20.
These young brain tumor survivors were honored by nearly 400 participants at Jim Warren Park in Franklin. Their leisurely ride included 22 miles on the historic Natchez Trace.
Back at the park, the children talked about their lives and gave everyone a chance to see what a difference their fundraising makes. This point was reinforced by two doctors from the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Adam J. Esbenshade and Devang Pastakia.
Dr. Esbenshade says: “[Research] is showing promise for the future, but all of this requires great sums of money. What you are doing here today will help save the lives of children in the future.”
Middle Tennessee’s leading fundraisers were:
- Individuals: Otis & Tina Bishop, $5,795
- Motorcycle club/chapter: TN Honda Riders Club, $8,212
- Motorcycle business: Sloan’s Motorcycle, $17,887
- Special organization: (tie) Spring Hill High School and Mollie Mae Hankins Memorial, $1,000
- The total raised included $62,705 from a PBTF pinup campaign at Hardee’s Restaurants in the region.
Ride for Kids sponsors provided drawing prizes that went to: James Bell (Honda motorcycle); Sammy Duke (Dunlop tire); Joseph Garrison (AGV helmet); Jim Franklin (Tourmaster luggage); and Robert Britt (Cardo Scala Rider).
A large round of applause went to the dozens of volunteers who organized this year’s ride. Task force leaders were Otis and Tina Bishop, Diane and David Hutcheson, Jerry and Sharon Hamilton, and Anita and Jack Wheeler.
Louisiana marks 10th year
This year the Louisiana Ride for Kids moved from the fall to the spring, and from Lafayette to Alexandria. Yesterday the state’s 10th ride for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation raised $22,840 to help young people like Lily, Brian and Brook.
These brain tumor survivors led the ride from the Exhibition Hall at Rapides Parish Coliseum through portions of Kisatchie National Forest. Afterward they told their stories to the crowd of 180 supporters.
Guest speaker David Broussard, an adult survivor of a childhood brain tumor, compared medical research advances with innovations in the motorcycle industry.
David Broussard says: “A ride on a bike and medical treatment administered in 1975 were vastly different than what is available today.”
The event’s top fundraisers were:
- Individuals: Gaten & Rose Sharbeno $3,816
- Motorcycle club/chapter: Mafioso, $4,191
- Motorcycle business: Renegade Harley-Davidson, $4,933
- Special organization: In Memory of Gene Brady, $300
Donated Ride for Kids drawing prizes went to Pam Jastram (Honda motorcycle); Lane Fletcher (AGV helmet); Thomas Cardwell (Dunlop tire); Sharon Robbins (Tourmaster luggage); and Kathleen Soto (Cardo Scala Rider).
Neil Kavanagh and Will and Suzanne Loewer spearheaded this year’s event. The volunteers were joined at the ride by Ride for Kids task force members from Michigan and Texas.
About the PBTF Ride for Kids
Ride for Kids supports the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation (PBTF) by funding medical research and family support programs. We thank our presenting sponsor, Honda Riders Club of America, and our national insurance sponsor, GEICO. The next Ride for Kids events are on Sunday, June 3 in Atlanta, Albuquerque and Richmond. Learn more at rideforkids.org or call 800-253-6530.