beats all odds to complete 3800 miles
A Scotland man took the meaning
of making lemonade out of lemons to a whole new level
as he pushed against all odds to cross the country from San Francisco
to New York City in a wheelchair bicycle to raise money to fight
Kenny Herriot faces challenges of his own every day as he is paralyzed
from his waist down. But, he doesnt let that stop him from
Herriot took a brief respite in the Versailles State Park on May
29 as he rested from his day of cycling and readied himself to
finish the journey he began on April 27. He noted that the park
was a peaceful, serene place to rest. Some of his stops for the
night have just been parking lots. He was traveling with his cousin,
also from Scotland, and a friend from Georgia. They would take
turns driving a donated RV and sometimes riding alongside Herriot.
He told The Versailles Republican About 75% is mental attitude.
You have to keep going. And he does. Despite the rain, cold,
mountainous terrain he has crossed, even after being struck by
a motorist in Illinois, he pushes on.
Just five days before being in Versailles, Herriot was hit by
a driver who wasnt paying attention. Even though his support
vehicle was visible with flashers on, and his special made bicycle
was clearly marked and visible, he was still the victim of someone
who didnt have their eyes focused on the road.
That accident has compounded issues for the already challenged
bicyclist. Herriot noted, Some days you just have to find
a reason to go on. The reason he continues his journey is
for others, children in particular.
Thats why I challenge myself, for others, he
noted as he drank a protein shake and was getting some rest after
a long day of cycling.
Herriot said he goes about 85 miles or more each day and ended
Sunday, June 7 in New York, with him traveling about 3,800 miles.
Described as one of the worlds leading wheelchair
athletes, Herriot decided to take on the 15-state challenge
to bring awareness to the importance of funding childhood cancer
Dubbed The Great Lemon Ride, the journey is to support Alexs
Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF) in honor of Alexandra Alex Scott,
who lost her battle to cancer at the young age of eight. At the
age of four, Alex announced she wanted to have a lemonade stand
to raise money to help find a cure for all children with cancer.
Since that first stand was erected, thousands of volunteers have
kept the dream alive and a national fundraising movement was born.
The charity has raised more than $25 million and funded over 80
research projects nationally.
This is a very worthwhile cause, for which I am honored
and privileged to raise awareness for, said Herriot. I
have been given fantastic opportunities in my own life to travel
the world, experience amazing things, and now it is my time to
give back. This challenging journey will push me to the max, but
I know how important the battle against childhood cancer is. I
am doing this for future generations, they deserve these cures.
Liz Scott, mother of Alex, noted, My daughter Alex proved
that human beings are capable of incredible things, no matter
their age or situation. What better way to solidify that fact
than through Kenny, who much like Alex, has not let his situation
hold him back in life.
Herriot told The Versailles Republican he has participated in
a number of challenges, cycled the length of Great Britain in
17 days, and just wanted to push himself a little further this
time. This is the longest ride Ive ever done,
he smiled, and said it was the most challenging. He broke the
British record for the wheelchair marathon in 2005.
Since he was injured in a motorcycle accident in 2000, Herriot
hasnt spent any time feeling sorry for himself. As a successful
fitness instructor he believes his success is greatly attributed
to being fit. It really does make a big difference,
he noted. He said he refuses to let his disability hold him back.
From the Golden Gate Bridge Herriot made his way, slow at times.
One mountain in Colorado was 60 miles up, he laughed.
That took him the better part of one day. States his journey took
him through included California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Kansas,
Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland,
Pennsylvania, New Jersey and finally New York.
Herriot said without the people supporting him behind the
scenes he couldnt make the journey. His cousin, a
police officer in Scotland, a friend from Georgia and the corporate
and personal sponsors have made the trip a reality with Herriot
putting forth the manpower. He hand cycled every mile of the trip.
For more information about Alexs Lemonade Stand Foundation
you can go online at www.alexslemonade.org.