AMHERST, N.Y. -- Why do you Ride for Roswell? Ask anyone at Saturday's event and you'll probably get eight thousand different answers. Bradley Kozuch talks about how Team Salvadore-Pedal Power was born.
"My best friend since about first grade... his mom got cancer so we thought it'd be a good way to bring cancer awareness," said Kozuch.
Kozuch said Pedal Power has close to 75 riders. Team Matthew, though, had some humble beginnings. Jodi Stroud explained her group rides for her son who continues his battle with chronic myelogenous leukemia.
"The very first ride Matthew was obviously in the hospital doing what he had to do but the rest of our family did. And our team has grown from about 10 or 12 people the first year and this we have 35 and we have a few people in the extra mile club as well," Stroud remarked.
But both teams have a common goal - they ride so Roswell Park Cancer Institute can keep up their fight against cancer. Ride day totals hit $4.3 million and continues to grow. The amount of money raised over The Ride's 19 year history? That's close to $30 million. Each and every dollar brings them closer to a cure.
"It's tough today with all the budget cuts that happen for the hospital and all the state regulations. But you do what you can," said Stroud. "We hope that maybe some genetic studies and all of the genetic things that are going on downtown at the medical campus are going to find us a cure."
Pedal Power helped contribute $40,000 to the cause. Kozuch said he was impressed not only with what his team accomplished, but the outpouring of support from all 8,000 participants. That support will allow Roswell to continue research and provide patient care for each and every person who walks through their doors for cancer treatment.
"The Buffalo community can all come together - we are the city of good neighbors. And we come together to support a really good cause," Kozuch said.
Ride for Roswell is the largest fundraising effort in Western New York and the largest cycling fundraiser in North America. Time Warner Cable News is a sponsor of the fundraiser.