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Rickabaugh pursues Great Cycle Challenge for children’s cancer research

MADISON – Linda Rickabaugh hopes residents will join her quest with the Great Cycle Challenge to raise funds for Children’s Cancer Research Fund.

“I was intrigued by the biking aspect of it, but, when I investigated further, I saw all the kids’ faces who were impacted by cancer. I couldn’t say, ‘No,’” Rickabaugh said. “Plus, my husband lost a little brother when leukemia was almost a death sentence.”

In the campaign, “bike riding is a physical way of getting out and spreading awareness. It’s twofold: promoting advantages of fitness and the importance of the challenge, which is to raise money for cancer research,” she said.

Anyone interested in supporting the fundraising can visit GreatCycleChallenge.com and join.

Rickabaugh’s 2021 goal is $4,000. “Last year, I raised over $5,000, and I hope to do the same this year but at least $4,000,” she said.

She plans to ride 400 miles, an average of about 14 miles daily. “Some days I can’t ride; other days, I’ll do more,” Rickabaugh said.

“Children’s Cancer Research Fund does not dole funds to individuals, but rather the money funds research to eradicate cancers in children, such as brain tumors and leukemia,” Rickabaugh said. “Some cancers are specific to children and not easily treated. Different groups address the treatment and funding.”

Alabama does not have any large research facilities that directly benefit from CCRF. “Certainly, we would benefit indirectly if an Alabama child were treated and ultimately cured because of knowledge and research that CCRF funds,” Rickabaugh said.

Active in volunteering, Rickabaugh has participated in outreach for March of Dimes, Knights of Columbus and her sister’s nonprofit to benefit 9-11 victims. However, her most extensive effort has been with the cancer fund. “It’s important for individuals to give of their time and talents to benefit organizations in need,” she said.

A ‘byproduct’ of her fundraising has been bicycling’s healthy exercise. “You can definitely burn calories,” Rickabaugh said. She lost 15 pounds last year. She has enjoyed the adventure of discovering different bike baths and trails throughout Madison and Huntsville.

Individuals can donate through September to Rickabaugh’s campaign at greatcyclechallenge.com/riders/lindarickabaugh.

Originally from Yuma, Ariz., she moved to Madison 19 years ago. For about 10 years, Rickabaugh has served as caregiver for her mother, who will be 100 years old in November.

For more information, call 256-541-3185, email Rickabaughlinda1@gmail.com or visit Greatcyclechallenge.com/riders/lindarickabaugh.

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