The riders of Team Warren did their part to support cancer research and patient care in 2013 by raising $11,527 in the Ride for Roswell.
This year, that number nearly doubled.
Team Warren - consisting of 28 local cyclists - raised $20,232 for the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, N.Y.
Photo submitted to the Times Observer
Riding for Roswell
Members of Team Warren include, from left, front row: Jeff Fitzgerald, Bill Dawes, Sandy Wilks, Beth Sprentz, Donna Risinger, Diana Flickner, Jennifer Hale, Kathy Decker, Sabrina Piaschyk (with future team member Tatina Piaschyk), and Kathie White; second row: Jodi Grinnen, Scott Grinnen, Joe Sprentz, Melissa Danielson, Rich Bimber, Keith Hedges, and Jeff Flickner; back row: Cathy Bertch, John Brodfuehrer, Nancy Mieszczak, Alex Decker, Martha Donnelly, Lori Bimber, Heidi Hedges, Jim Decker, Tom Groff, Dawn McCollough, and Todd Randolph.
Team Warren has grown in each of its four years in the Ride for Roswell - the idea to take part being brought to Warren by John Brodfuehrer those years ago on a tee-shirt. Fellow team members read it during "spinning" class at the YMCA, and the adventure began.
This year, among 11 different routes, three from Team Warren rode for 30 miles, seven for 44 1/2 miles, several for 62 1/2 miles, and eight rode the "century ride" of 104 miles.
The Institute holds the Ride for Roswell event every year to benefit the more than 31,000 cancer patients that turn to Roswell Park. Donations are used to improve patient and family experience, support clinical treatments and procedures, provide proper clinical space to meet the demand for cancer services, and educate the next generation of cancer scientists and clinicians. In addition to the money raised by teams, Roswell Park receives an additional $13 in grant money for every dollar contributed. This year's event totaled over $4.3 million.
Over 8,000 riders participated in the 2014 installment of Ride for Roswell, and Team Warren captain Cathy Bertch said it's a very important event for every member of her group.
"We have a tight closeness in this group," said Bertch, adding that they have all been impacted by cancer, and support one another. "We want to find a cure."
"We make a weekend out of it, and have gotten to be close friends," she said. "We would like to thank everyone that made a donation to The Ride. Everyone has been touched by cancer in one way or another. Each year we ride to help find a cure for this disease. At the end where the finish line is, they have names of survivors and names of deceased cancer victims. The entire day is very emotional, but the end is so touching. There are people on the sidelines cheering you on and patients going through treatment, thanking us for what we did... We didn't do anything compared to what they are fighting for."
Team Warren members include Bertch, Jeff Fitzgerald, Bill Dawes, Sandy Wilks, Beth Sprentz, Donna Risinger, Diana Flickner, Jennifer Hale, Kathy Decker, Sabrina Piaschyk, Kathie White, Jodi Grinnen, Scott Grinnen, Joe Sprentz, Melissa Danielson, Rich Bimber, Keith Hedges, Jeff Flickner, Brodfuehrer, Nancy Mieszczak, Alex Decker, Martha Donnelly, Lori Bimber, Heidi Hedges, Jim Decker, Tom Groff, Dawn McCollough, and Todd Randolph.
For more information, visit www.rideforroswell.org, and click on Team Warren.