"I honor those who lives have been lost and those who still struggle by dedicating my rides to them."
Georgetown, MA (PRWEB) May 30, 2015
Cyclist Barry Haarde will commence his fourth cross-country bike tour, “Wheels for the World 2015: Piles of Miles” near San Francisco, California on May 30 to raise awareness about hemophilia and encourage individuals to support needy hemophilic children through Save One Life.
Save One Life supports nearly 1,200 impoverished children and adults with hemophilia in eleven developing countries through direct sponsorships, scholarships and micro-enterprise grants. Hemophilia is a rare genetic disorder that prevents blood from forming an effective clot. Estimated to occur in one out of every 5,000 male births, untreated hemophilia can cause prolonged internal bleeding, painful joint deformities, crippling and death.
In 2012 Barry became the first person with hemophilia and HIV to cycle across the United States. He rode 3,667 miles from Ashland, Oregon through eleven states and Canada to Portsmouth, New Hampshire in 50 days. Two more cross-country trips in 2013 and 2014 have raised that total to over 10,000 miles. Through these efforts, Wheels for the World has secured $130,000 for Save One Life.
Barry dedicates each day of his ride to a person with hemophilia who has lost his life to hepatitis or AIDS and posts their photos and names on Facebook. This includes Ryan White, the teenager who became the face of HIV/AIDS in the late 1980s when he was expelled from his school due to his infection.
For many years Barry hid his own HIV-positive status. But, after surviving a grueling multi-year treatment to cure his hepatitis in his early forties, Barry decided to make his disorder public. Since then Barry has been symbol of courage, determination and endurance for people with hemophilia around the world.
Barry is an outstanding example of his favorite motto, attributed to musician Bob Marley, “You don't know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.”
“Having survived over thirty years with HIV, and also having cured hepatitis C—from which I’d developed liver cirrhosis—I have a very strong sense of gratitude and appreciation,” says Barry. “Not only have I survived, I am able to maintain the physical health and conditioning required to ride a bike across America. I can at least honor our lost and help those who still struggle by dedicating my rides to them.”
Barry will ride through 13 states in 52 days to dip his wheel in the Atlantic Ocean in Portsmouth, New Hampshire on July 21. The first two weeks of his journey will take him from San Francisco to Sacramento, then north of Lake Tahoe to skirt along Interstate 80 in Nevada. He will stop for a rest day in Salt Lake City, Utah, before continuing along to Provo and Green River on his way to Colorado.
This year Barry aims to secure 130 child sponsorships—10 for each state he rides through—in addition to raising $40,000 for his favorite charity. To learn more about Barry and his Wheels for the World campaign, visit http://www.SaveOneLife.net.
Baxter International, Inc. is the gold sponsor of “Wheels for the World 2015: Piles of Miles.” Biogen, Emergent, George King Bio-Medical, Hemophilia of Indiana, OptumRx and The Alliance Pharmacy are also supporting this event.