Cops Cycle to Canada to Raise Money for Cancer Research - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

7/18/08

Cops Cycle to Canada to Raise Money for Cancer Research

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Houston police and firemen are cycling through Lubbock Friday on their journey to Canada. 

They are all riding to raise money for the same goal, a cure for Leukemia. 

This is the 27th year for the Houston Police Bike Relay.  Over the years Houston officials have raised more than $4-million for Leukemia research.  They started this year's relay on Thursday and will end up in Kelowna, British Columbia next Wednesday.

"We're just seeing them through, just rooting them on.  We appreciate it," said Glenda and Alvin Burton.

Glenda and Alvin Burton of Lubbock have had two family members die from cancer in the last year. 

Captain Richard Hernandez of the Houston Fire Department knows the Burton's niece. 

"Several years ago when I was raising funds to do this event, I asked Rita, their niece, if she would like to help donate for this Leukemia ride that we do ever year and she said yes she would love to and while she was collecting from some of her employees she said let me tell you about my brother," said Hernandez. 

Her brother who is the Burton's nephew died last august after meeting the cyclists who were riding for him. 

"It's wonderful that they do that and it's just touched us so much to think you know and they've touched lives so it can just go on and on," said Burton.   

There are four teams involved in the relay.  Each team takes turns riding 10 hours a day, which is about 150 miles. 

"Each team has about six or seven members to each team.  We have a patrol car.  We have a support van.  We ride 24 hours a day, somebody is on the ground 24 hours a day," said Hernandez. 

As they are going through different cities they invite officers to ride with them.  A Lubbock police officer and fireman joined them Friday.  The officers never forget who they are riding for. 

"These are dog tags that we wear in honor of or in memory of cancer patients," said Sgt. David Johnson of the Houston Police Department.    

"We do it for the research.  We do it for the ones that can be saved.  I think there saying there is an 80% survival rate for people with Leukemia now," said Hernandez. 

The Houston Police Bike Relay has raised $170,000 so far this year.  When they reach Canada, they will have pedaled 2500 miles.

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