AIT-Chicago Driver Continues Decades-Long Ride for Kids Support
On a warm, sunny Sunday morning in July, one AIT-Chicago driver carried on a 21 year tradition and volunteered at the 30th annual Ride for Kids event. Based at Elgin Community College (ECC) in the Chicago suburb of Elgin, Illinois, the family-friendly motorcycle ride is one of dozens that take place nationwide to support the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation (PBTF).
Hundreds of motorcycles assembled for the scenic ride through the Illinois countryside. The massive group was escorted by local and state law enforcement who worked to control traffic and provide a continuous route unimpeded by traffic lights and other stops. Lunch was served on site and as in years past, AIT donated a refrigerated (aka 'reefer') truck for the day to keep the perishable food and beverages cool until the bikers returned from their 50 mile ride.
In celebration of the ride's 30 year history, a giant hot air balloon with the Ride for Kids logo adorned the ECC parking lot. This year also featured a special guest: legendary Chicago Blackhawks center and NHL Hall of Famer Stan Mikita who met with and signed autographs for those in attendance.
In the end, the Chicago area ride - which is perennially one of the top contributors to the cause - raised $162,173.92 for PBTF. With 28,000 people in the United States living with a childhood brain tumor diagnosis, the funds will certainly help in the continuing fight against the disease.
For this event, AIT's driver serves as support staff, but he is a motorcycling enthusiast who rides a Harley Ultra Classic and a Honda Gold Wing. He also avidly lobbies for motorcycle rights in Washington, D.C. and he pointed out, "Bikers tend to be very active in the community - there are charitable rides each weekend during the season." He added, "Every day, there are 11 new cases of child brain tumors and knowing that we can do something to help has kept me involved with the Ride for Kids for the past two decades."
About the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation
The Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation is a nonprofit charitable 501(c)(3) foundation that works to eliminate the challenges of childhood brain tumors. Their goals include increasing public awareness about the severity and prevalence of childhood brain tumors, aiding in their early detection and treatment, supporting a national database on all primary brain tumors and providing hope and emotional support for the thousands of children and families affected by this life-threatening disease.