Langleyites riding for a reason

Heart & Stroke Foundation has the Big Bike travelling through the streets of Willowbrook this week.

One bike. 30 seats. 20 minutes. Two kilometres.

One big bike. One big team working to create more survivors.

Once again the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada is in town – the Willowbrook neighbourhood to be specific – this week with a variety of local teams pedalling the huge bike through the streets to raise money and draw attention to the cause.

Year one, Jacqueline Gellatly rode for her mom. Year two, she rode for her dad.

This year, her third time out, Gellatly is riding for her father-in-law (a.k.a. Grandpa) who was rushed to hospital Jan. 2, after suffering a massive stroke.

“Family were told that he may not make it through the night,” Gellatly shared in explaining her quest to keep riding the Big Bike.

He did survive the night.

“He was a fighter,” she explained. “Unfortunately, the after effects caught up to him and he passed away Jan. 20.”

So this week, she’s riding the Big Bike in his memory.

Likewise, Jane Bryce is literally stopping traffic to support critical heart disease and stroke research.

For her, it’s an important cause.

Bryce works with hundreds of local seniors through Bria Communities (Magnolia and Sunridge Gardens), but this cause also hits a personal cord for her.

Her father recently suffered a stroke, and in her efforts to raise both money and awareness to help combat the disease, she climbed on the Big Bike and rode it through the streets of Langley this week.

A team for Curves Langley is participating, shooting to raise $5,000, and rider Charon Glennon is aiming to raise $300 – each with their own motivation to participate.

Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death for Canadian men and women.

As a matter of fact, every seven minutes, someone in Canada dies from heart disease or stroke.

But that can be changed.

All of the money raised through Big Bike helps support the Heart and Stroke Foundation, and according to them the donations are used to help fund critical research that’s preventing heart disease and stroke, saving lives and supporting survivors and their families.

The Big Bike was in Langley Wednesday and Thursday, May 9 and 10, based out of the Save-On-Foods parking lot on 64th Avenue.

For more information about the Big Bike or the Heart & Stroke Foundation, people can visit their website.

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