As I sit here physically exhausted, I reflect on the day I’ve had. It started early this morning with prepping my bicycle and gear and lead to the ride brief. Although I ride quite a bit at home, this wasn’t like the others. I wasn’t in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Instead, I was with Ride 2 Recovery in Manassas, Virginia. This was day two for them, but my first day. Day one involved a visit to Vice President Joe Biden’s house. How cool is that!
So, for day two, the entire 51.6-mile ride to Fredericksburg, Virginia was beautiful. We were also escorted by police. They did a fantastic job stopping traffic so we could get through intersections and make turns on the route. At miles 13 and 32 were stops for snacks and lunch, fully supported by sponsors such as the USO.
Now, logistics with any ride take planning, but with these challenges, it’s not just one route on one day. It’s a week-long adventure that starts in Washington, D.C. and ends in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
The riders, some using hand cycles or others on recumbent bicycles while the rest ride traditional bicycles, rode proudly. Many of these wounded warriors ride with scars visible and invisible. Their injuries don’t matter here, though. We are a group, a team, just as we were during our time in service. Whether in the most competitive A group or the more beginner D group, we stick together. Here everyone is outside, pedaling to the next mile under the bright sunny sky.
We saw school children and gave hi-fives as we rode through the school parking lot, a well as passed families in their yards.
As I’ve said in my previous posts, I feel so incredibly honored to ride among these people. Today was incredible. The route wasn’t especially difficult, but the camaraderie was unmatched.
You can find more photos using the hashtag #R2Rmemorialchallenge. I will post more through the week.
For today, keep pedaling.