They left from Vancouver September 10, and Monday afternoon cyclists participating in the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride (SNKCR) stopped at Sears in Moose Jaw for a brief rest.
The riders were greeted by local dignitaries including Mayor Deb Higgins, Moose Jaw Wakamow MLA Greg Lawrence and Moose Jaw North MLA Warren Michelson.
The Cancer Ride cyclists are comprised of men and women who have been touched by childhood cancer in some way, shape or form.
"This is the 2nd time I've done the National Cancer Ride," said Dr. Bruce Crooks, a pediatric oncologist at the IWK Health Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia. "I look after all the kids with cancer (at the centre) and it's something I wish I didn't have to do, but it's something that's very important. Nobody deserves to have cancer, but especially kids. It robs them of their childhood...it makes them old before their time."
Dr. Crooks did have some positive statistics to share. "Eighty-two per cent of kids can actually be cured of their cancers, but eighteen per cent are not going to make it, and that's too many."
Rider Hannah MacKenzie is a survivor of childhood cancer, and in fact was one of Dr. Crooks' patients in her hometown of Halifax, and she helped spur Dr. Crooks to join the SNKCR. "He's my oncologist," said MacKenzie. "I challenged him to do (the ride) in 2013, but I had to finish university so I couldn't do it (then). I said when I graduate I'll do it, and I graduated (this year) so I'm doing it."
Cancer survivors Jennifer Rogers and Taylor Wheatley are also part of the SNKCR, and they say that one of the biggest keys in recovery is having a positive attitude, and that isnt' typically an issue with kids.
"It's better on that (cancer) floor to not be sad, because positivity is a very powerful thing," said Rogers, with Wheatley adding "in the best of worlds it would be amazing to have adult cancer patients and kids cancer patients together, because the kids are so much more positive."
The riders made their way to Regina Monday night, and continued their trek to Halifax Tuesday morning. You can donate to the cause at Sears in Moose Jaw, or online.