Sunday, July 13, 2003

Bicycle trek aids research, services for MS

Life cycle Bikers raise funds for chronic disease

By Jeremy W. Steele
The Cincinnati Enquirer

LEBANON - Don Beland's tush provided a nice accent to his tight biker shorts early Saturday morning.

His peach-colored imitation rump flopped over the black shorts - a mascot of sorts for the 25-member Team BUNS. Shortly after 7:30 a.m., the group pedaled away from the Countryside YMCA with 627 other bikers for the 22nd annual MS-150 Bike Ride for Multiple Sclerosis, a two-day, 150-mile bicycle trek. This year's ride takes bikers from Lebanon to Miami University in Oxford and back.

This morning the bicyclists are to return from Oxford and they'll be eager to dismount. Beland said, "It's day two that's a real battle;. "There's nowhere comfortable on the bike seat to sit."

Like many of the participants in the fund-raiser for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Ohio Valley Chapter, Beland has a connection to MS that makes the pain of sitting on a bicycle seat for so long worth it.

MS is a chronic and sometimes disabling neurological disease of the central nervous system that affects more than 400,000 Americans. A friend with the disease introduced Beland to the bicycling event, which officials expect to raise $500,000 this year for health-care services and research.

The ride is the chapter's largest fund-raising event. Nationwide, bicycling events around the country raised $30 million last year.

Dr. John Tew sees the effects of MS on a daily basis. The neurosurgeon also sees the benefits of the charitable causes to help those with the disease.

Tew is medical director of the Neuroscience Institute, a partnership between Health Alliance and the University of Cincinnati.

"The Multiple Sclerosis Society does so much to help local people get care," said Tew, a captain of the bicycle team from University of Cincinnati's Waddell Center for Multiple Sclerosis. "It's a chronic disease and it can be very difficult to care for someone."

About 60 percent of the money raised stays in the Cincinnati and Dayton areas to provide care and other services for people with MS. Another 20 percent is used to fund research projects. Riders, who pay a $35 registration fee, must raise at least $200 in pledges to participate.

Rest stops are set up about every 10 miles for bikers along the route through Warren and Butler counties.

The group arrived in Oxford, where they would stay the night in dorms, about 5 p.m. Saturday.



Bronson: Flynts' outrage just part of their fetish for ink
Howard: Some good news
Pulfer: TV infomercial Springer's latest 'silly show'

Convergys: Council agonizes over take-it-or-leave-it deal
Convergys could displace 5 companies
You're more familiar with Convergys than you think
Tell 'em what you think
Stung online, few claim innocence
New laws OK'd online police stings
Protecting your kids while they're online

Parents' pride: All 3 kids in Iraq
Tall Ships set their sails for northern Ohio ports
Butler receives aid for seniors
Bicycle trek aids research, services for MS
Should records go on 'Net?
Residents fight shopping center
Mystery of stolen rabbit statue solved
Dad accused of giving son a lethal drug overdose
Episcopalians turn to humor to fill the pews
600 nuns hold regional meeting
OSU trustees pass second tuition increase in 3 months
Some suspects allowed to roam
Tristate A.M. Report

David J. Pusack, 80, retired engineer

Blood shortage delays some surgeries
Cloggers, tiny dragsters, prize chickens and more
Lakeside Park cops suspect homicide
Body identified as S. Lebanon woman
A.G. says they called despite do-not-call
Dems draw up battle plan at saloon
$100,000 reward in attack on Ky. horses
Ky. teachers' salaries trail U.S. average