The 10th Annual A Ride to Remember is just around the corner
by Laura Stone | June 28, 2018 3:19 pm
Last Updated: June 28, 2018 at 12:23 pm
The 10th Annual A Ride to Remember is just around the corner. The event, held this year from July 13-15, raises both awareness and money for the Alzheimer’s Association.
Clarendon County residents Pete Surrette and George “Trip” Hussey will join the 350+ other riders for the 252-mile trip from Simpsonville to Mount Pleasant. On July 13, riders will travel 69 miles to Newberry, followed by 89 miles to Orangeburg on July 14.
As they reach Orangeburg, Surrette and Hussey say friends and family from Clarendon County have shown up in the past to encourage them and support them. The final day is a 99-mile ride through Charleston to Mount Pleasant.
The event raises money by individual riders, as well as teams, beating the pavement to gain local support and donations. Each rider has an individual donation page to track their goals, and donations are tax deductible. Corporate sponsors are sought, and if found in time, the corporate logos are put on the event jerseys. This year, McCleod Health Systems is a sponsor, although not in time to be on the jersey.
Surrette, who grew up in Turbeville, has been riding for seven to eight years. As a retired law enforcement officer with 26 years in the Manning PD, Clarendon County Sheriff’s Department, and the South Carolina State Troopers, Surrette also rides to fundraise for Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.) and Law Enforcement United. He currently owns a lawn maintenance business, Complete Lawn Service, with his wife.
Hussey, a Sumter native, was in and out of Manning much of his childhood, as his grandparents owned a carpet store in Manning. After his time in the Army, Hussey moved to Manning to be near his family again and has been here 15 years. He is currently a district sales manager for Coca Cola. Originally a runner, he began riding when he started to have back and knee issues.
When the two men met through a mutual friend, they began riding together, building a strong friendship. “It’s safer in numbers,” said Surrette. They’ve trained together for this year’s event, participating in different events across the state to prepare. They bicycle year round, weather permitting.
As this will be the third year for Hussey to participate and the second year for Surrette, both men know what to expect from A Ride to Remember.
The ride is traditionally, and intentionally, held during a hot month to show the riders’ dedication to the cause. Snack and drink stations are set up every 10-15 miles, and the riders receive a police escort as they move through Charleston. Luggage transportation is provided during the days of the ride.
“The whole group raised about half a million dollars last year,” said Surrette. According to ARIDETOREMEMBER.ORG, all funds raised by A Ride to Remember help the Alzheimer’s Association raise awareness, advance research and enhance care and support for those with dementia.
On his A Ride to Remember page, Hussey states, “This disease destroyed the last years for my namesake and grandfather, George Sr. It clouds the great memories I have with him. This is the least I can do to honor him.” His current donations for this year’s ride are $2,386.
“I am participating in A Ride to Remember again this year in Memory of those who we have lost and in honor of all who are battling this tragic disease,” said Surrette on his page. His donations have reached $1,415.
Both men enjoy time spent with family, on the lake and off, when they’re not working or cycling. However, they both feel dedicated to the Alzheimer’s cause.
“South Carolina has recently been named number one in the nation for new Alzheimer’s patient diagnoses. We all have friends or family that have been affected by this tragic disease,” said Surrette.
“The feeling when you get to the finishing line is amazing. You know you’re raising money, and you’re with great people for three days,” said Hussey. “We’re all a little goofy, but it’s a good community.”
Donations for the event can be made as late as July 31, and donors can give a flat amount or commit to a per-mile amount. To make donations to Hussey’s goal, visit http://act.alz.org/site/TR/ActiveEvents/SC-SouthCarolina?px=11907951&pg=personal&fr_id=10937. To donate to Surrette’s goals, visit http://act.alz.org/site/TR/ActiveEvents/SC-SouthCarolina?px=7062390&pg=personal&fr_id=10937.
To learn about the services provided by the South Carolina Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, visit alz.org/sc.