Gifford Medical’s Last Mile Ride raises $40,000

first_imgSaturday’s Last Mile Ride – Gifford Medical Center’s annual charity motorcycle ride – attracted more than 180 riders and raised approximately $40,000 for end-of-life care at the nonprofit Randolph medical center.Started in 2006 by Gifford nurse and motorcyclist Lynda McDermott of Randolph, the ride has grown significantly in the five years since in both the number of riders it attracts and the money it raises. This year’s ride took motorcyclists through about 100 miles of central Vermont countryside through Randolph, Northfield, Montpelier, Middlesex, the Mad River Valley, Rochester, Bethel and more. Orange County Sheriff Bill Bohnyak led the ride and combat veterans provided “road guard” services. The ride ended at the hospital with a chicken and rib barbecue and live music from local group “Two for the Show and Company.” Riders were also given free massages and awarded prizes. Riders who raised the most money for the cause received gifts from area motorcycle dealers.Topping the list of riders who raised the most were Tim and Patty Schroeder, who raised $1,847; Linda Chugkowski and Robert Martin, who raised $1,810; and Reg and Rose Mongeur, who collected more than $1,300.Reg Mongeur, a combat veteran, also served as a road guard and rode in memory of his late mother, Caroline Mongeur, who died in Gifford’s Garden Room in May.The Garden Room is a garden-side suite for dying patients and their families. The ride supports free services for those patients as well as for other patients in advanced illness, family bereavement services and special training for Gifford’s staff.“The staff at Gifford and the Garden Room … they made the transition between life and death a lot smoother. Everybody involved from the Gifford side of it, it was like it was their family (member) too,” says Reg Mongeur of how his mother was treated. The experience made Reg all the more supportive of the ride and gave him drive to raise money so others could experience the same service.And Reg – a Vietnam veteran – got a bit of a surprise of his own at the ride.Riders gave the combat veterans a standing ovation for their help at the ride. The act of kindness brought tears to the Vietnam vet’s eyes.This year’s ride also included the raffle of a Harley-Davidson Sportster 883 Low from Wilkins Harley-Davidson in Barre. Art Peper, a 92-year-old World War II and Korean War veteran and prison of war, won the motorcycle.Ride organizer Ashley Lincoln called Peper with the news immediately after the ticket was drawn.“I didn’t believe it,” said Peper, who had collected antique Indian and Harley motorcycles before selling them a few years ago.Schroeder sold Peper the winning ticket on behalf of the hospital. “When Tim sold me the ticket he said, ‘This is the lucky ticket,’ and it was.”Peper bought the ticket to support the ride, not expecting to win. He’s now not quite sure what he’ll do with his shiny new Harley, which Schroeder delivered on Saturday afternoon.  “It’s fun, but I don’t think I’ll ever ride it,” said the Randolph resident who has had visitors and plenty of phone calls – some from people he hasn’t talked to in years – since his big win.“It made him very happy,” notes his wife, Rose.Peper’s says he’s just happy the ride raised so much money for end-of-life care.Other winners included Thom Goodwin, a hospital employee from Corinth, who won a stunning quilt make by Gifford nurses. “I’m thrilled and elated. Five nurses poured their heart into creating this. When I look at the quilt I can be reminded daily of what a caring and compassionate community Gifford is,” Goodwin said.And ride volunteer and pediatrician Dr. Mitsu Chobanian was the winner of a 50/50 raffle.The date for next year’s ride has already been set. It will be held Aug. 20, 2010. Visit the hospital’s Web site, www.giffordmed.org(link is external) for updates on 2011 ride and more photos from this year’s ride.The other Last Mile RideMotorcycles roared through the area on Saturday to raise money for end-of-life care at Gifford Medical Center in Randolph. But one rider had a much quieter start and finish. Marci White, a Gifford nurse, wife and mother from Braintree, rode her pedal bicycle 37 miles to Northfield and back Saturday morning to support the cause.Source: Gifford Medical Center. 8.24.2010last_img read more

Deep Hollow Half Marathon and 5k

first_imgDeep Hollow Half Marathon and 5k is the premier event of the Liberty Mountain Trail Series.  As a Liberty University Homecoming event, the race always draws an impressive crowd and creates a spectacular race day environment.  The half marathon course features a beautiful blend of single-track trails and mountain roads within the 5,000-acre trail system nestled in Lynchburg, VA. With nearly 2,000 feet of elevation change throughout the 13.1 mile course, it is a brutal though rewarding challenge.  This event is the most popular race in the series and draws experienced trail runners from all over Central Virginia.  The half marathon course was developed in 2007 and the local running community continues to embrace the event. The first Deep Hollow race director was Dave Christen, who is currently the race director for the Boulder Ironman and Triathlon series in Colorado. The initial course was very tough due to a much larger elevation gain and loss compared to the current course.It included the old “Deep Hollow Trail”, from which the race initially got its name. That trail no longer exists, having been incorporated into what is now “Horton’s Loop”, named after the ultra-running legend himself, David Horton.  Although the trail is no longer in existence, the Deep Hollow name has survived to this day.For the second year in a row, Deep Hollow is incorporated into the 2017 Virginia Commonwealth Games, which has only caused the competition to grow fiercer.  The half marathon course winds beautifully through the valleys and streams of Liberty Mountain and features peak foliage in the month of October.  Deep Hollow continues to set itself apart as a race that exemplifies comradery within competition.last_img read more