Over 800 motorcyclists hit the road for Ride for Dad

 

By Joel Charrron

Motorcycles ruled the streets of Windsor/Essex County Sunday afternoon as the Motorcycle Ride for Dad rumbled through the region.

More than 800 leather-clad bikers took part in the region’s fight against prostate cancer and they couldn’t have picked a better day to do so as weather conditions were ideal for riding.

“This is the kind of day you want when you’re out riding,” said Windsor resident Norm Baker.

Baker has been participating in the Motorcycle Ride for Dad since his brother Tim passed away from prostate cancer three year ago.

“There is not a day that goes by where I don’t think about him,” said Baker. “I know I can’t bring him back, I believe doing this and supporting the fight against prostate cancer is my way of keeping his memory alive.”

Baker said that he and his brother were very close and avid motorcycle riders.  As a fitting tribute, Baker rode his brother’s old bike.

“I only bust this bike out once a year,” said Baker. “It just seems fitting that this bike goes on the road for this.”

 

After spending the day on the road, over 800 motorcyclists flocked to Ranta Marina to enjoy food, entertain and fun.

The bike route started at the Windsor Family Credit Union Centre and travelled along the riverfront to Ranta Marina where riders had the option of continuing their ride into the county or stay and enjoy food and entertainment.

John McKinlay-Key, national director of operations for the Ride for Dad said the Windsor Chapter should be commended on a well-organized and well-executed event.

“They have truly out done themselves,” he said.

McKinlay-Key said the most important aspect of the day is raising public awareness of prostate cancer.

“One in seven men will contract prostate cancer in their lifetime,” he stated. “A healthy portion of those men will pass away from it if it’s not detected early.”

McKinlay-Key said there is a 95 per cent survival rate if prostate cancer is detected early,

“Our mission is to get men who are 40 years or older to go get checked out by their doctor,” he said.

With the Motorcycle Ride for Dad gaining momentum every year, McKinlay-Key said there are other versions of the Ride for Dad popping up, such as the Watercraft Ride for Dad, which takes place at Ranta Marina later this summer, a snowmobile version and a ATV version for the first time coming this fall.

Sue Garrett, president of the Windsor chapter for Ride for Dad said she was a “little worried” because of low registration numbers however the number skyrocketed the day before the event.

Although the donations were still trickling in, Garrett said the amount raised sits at $53,000.

“This has been a tremendous day,” said Garrett. ‘I’m very pleased and proud of everyone who came to show their support in this fight against prostate cancer.”

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