PRESTONSBURG – A group of college students from Western Kentucky University’s fraternity FIJI rolled into Prestonsburg as part of their bike across the nation to raise money for Alzheimer’s Disease awareness on July 12. A total of 12 bikers and two drivers started their 3,500-mile trek in Seattle, Washington. The group has visited 54 cities in 10 different states along the way.
“The reason we started this was one of our fraternity brother’s grandfather passed away from Alzheimer’s Disease in 2010 and we all wanted to do something in his honor,” said Joey Badinger, a junior from Oldham County. “We decided to bike across the nation to raise Alzheimer’s awareness.”
The group’s 3500-mile trek will end in Virginia Beach, Va. Plenty of family and friends will be waiting on the group’s arrival.
“None of us were bikers before this trip,” said Davis Church, a junior from Louisville. “As fraternity brothers, we support each other and this is an important cause. If someone has a family member or someone who suffers from the disease they can message us by going to our webpage www.bike4alz.org. We do daily dedications and dedicate each day’s ride to that individual.”
The fraternity has taken on the Alzheimer’s awareness cause as its unofficial philanthropy. The group became an official non-profit organization in 2016. The goal for the 3500-mile trip was to raise $100,000. The group reached out to various groups for help with planning fundraising events at stops throughout its trip. The fraternity brothers raised over $23,000 in Louisville and $5,000 in Bowling Green.
The group is on the final stretch of its trip this week and can be followed online at www.bike4alz.org.
Andrea Saddler is a reporter for The Floyd County Times. She can be reached at (606) 886-8506.