Ian Lightstone (left) with his Hero Ride team members.
For the past three years, Ian Lightstone has embarked on a 250 km bicycle ride in memory of his son, Jeremy. An avid cyclist, Ian participates in Hero Ride every summer in support of Bridgepoint Active Healthcare, part of Sinai Health System.
“When our son had brain cancer, he lost the ability to walk, and Bridgepoint really helped with his rehabilitation and physiotherapy,” says Ian. “The hospital was also there for us from an emotional standpoint when our son passed away.”
Ian and his wife started an initiative to name the internet cafe at Bridgepoint in memory of their son, who worked in the internet industry. Their Hero Ride team, Team Jeremy, has raised over $460,000 to date.
“It’s important to support rehabilitation for chronic and complex illnesses,” says Ian. “More and more, people are surviving cancers, heart disease, strokes, and diabetes, and now live with other complications as a result of these diseases. Bridgepoint helps patients manage these conditions and live as normal a life as possible.”
This year’s Hero Ride takes place from June 4 to 5. Cyclists can choose either a 160 km or 250 km route, from King City to Collingwood, with varying pace groups. The ride includes hotel accommodation, meals, and entertainment. Each rider must raise a minimum of $2,500 to participate.
“Asking for donations might seem daunting, but once you explain how important the cause is, you’d be surprised at how many people will sponsor you,” says Ian. “Chronic and complex illnesses touch so many people, and Bridgepoint, along with the Sinai Health System, helps these patients live with dignity despite their illnesses.”
Hero Ride is a challenging ride, but one that a relatively new rider can do with a bit of preparation. Each rider should have a good road bike, and be comfortable cycling on the road and with a large group.
For more information or to register for this year’s Hero Ride, visit www.bridgepointheroride.ca.