… I wish I may, I wish I might,
please grant me this wish I wish tonight...
The Make-A-Wish Foundation is one of those organizations that everyone loves – a charity dedicated to making dreams come true for children who are living with life-threatening illnesses.
But the Foundation needs money to make those dreams happen – and that's where great people like our RydeOn! client Fred Farrand come in.
Fred has pedalled the full 300 miles every year since 2009 during the foundation's Wish A Mile event to raise the money it takes to grant these special children's wishes. It all started when Fred, who has been an avid cyclist for years, was looking for a way to stretch himself.
When he decided to look for a “longer, more challenging” ride event a few years back, he said, “I didn't want to pay money to some company – instead I wanted to give back somehow as part of what I was doing.”
Fred said that up to that point he had never ridden 100 miles in a day – “...let alone for three days straight,” but that meeting the “Wish Kids” and hearing their stories makes every mile worth it.
“It's funny, but when you talk to the younger kids, they all wanted to go to Disney World. Older boys tend to want to have a Best Buy shopping spree, girls want to meet their favorite celebrity – but the wishes we hear about are all over the map and include hot-air balloon rides, deep sea fishing, visiting a dude ranch – you name it! And just hearing about how they got to experience their wish, it buoys you through the days – it makes the miles just melt away.”
Fred is part of a fourteen-person team called “David's Heroes,” which is named for the nephew of the team's manager. “David was a Wish Kid and is unfortunately no longer with us,” Fred explained. In 2011, David's Heroes raised $42,000, making them the most successful small team that year. This year the team has raised $32,000 with two and a half weeks to go until the July 26-29 event. Fred’s personal goal is to raise enough money to cover at least two full wishes.
It takes a lot of dedication to be able to ride 100 miles a day for three straight days – and a lot of training. Fred has been coming to RydeOn! since November, and told us that his classes have helped him stay in shape throughout the year.
“I'm a tax accountant, and I'm usually inside chained to my computer for twelve hours a day from December through mid-April,” he said. “But this past year, with RydeOn! right here in Saline, I came to classes three days a week through tax season – it kept me in good shape for my upcoming Wish A Mile ride and just in general.”
Fred added that now that it's summer he's training at RydeOn! two days a week and then cycling outside three-four days a week to get ready – including a forty-eight mile ride last Saturday when the temperature was in the high 90's!
We feel that Fred's dedication should be rewarded! This year, RydeOn! is helping Fred meet his fundraising goals for the July 26-29 event – we will match every donation made by our clients up to a total of $250.
If you don't want to donate online, just look for the form the next time you come in for class.