Pedal Power for Charity

John Edwards 1

what will be tough is the emotion of it all coupled with the fact that I’ll be away from my family for so long.

John_Edwards_01

You can see how John prepared for his trip here

PROBATION officer John Edwards is gearing up for a continental-sized cycle ride, as he aims to raise cash for a cancer charity following his brother’s death.

George Edwards, who was also a probation officer for the Merseyside Community Rehabilitation Company, died last year after contracting a virus while in hospital battling cancer.

John will be cycling 3,000 miles across north America – from San Diego to Florida – and hopes to raise thousands of pounds for Children With Cancer.

The father-of-two, who helps offenders secure housing and is based in the city’s Waterloo office, will be taking some of his brother’s ashes with him on the journey.

The 68-year-old said: “Two days before George died, we discussed doing a charity ride once he was better. It therefore feels fitting that I do it with him.

“It’s a very, very difficult time. But George remains an inspiration to me.”

John will be cycling a gruelling 80 miles per day over a 52 day period. He’s funding the trip so that every penny raised goes directly into the charity’s coffers.

John, from Widnes, said: “I cycle to work everyday, I’m in training and I don’t think I’ll find the ride a problem.

“But what will be tough is the emotion of it all coupled with the fact that I’ll be away from my family for so long.”

John flies out to San Diego on March 1st, before pedalling off three days later, accompanied by 28 cyclists from across the globe.

George joined probation in 1988 after a 22-year career as a fireman in the RAF. He also ran the city’s 7th Air Squadron air training corps group for a number of years, and worked for Toxteth’s Youth Offending Team (YOT).

John said: “George cared deeply about the problems Toxteth experienced in the 1980s and he was committed to helping improve the estate. That’s why he joined the air training corps, and that’s why he was seconded to the YOT.

“He loved taking young kids under his wing. His enthusiasm for that type of work inspired me to join probation, and with his support I was able to do that.

“George was a great man. He had a massive impact on my life and I dearly miss him. This charity ride is my way of saying ‘goodbye’.”

John chose the charity because a colleague’s grandson – Stephen Erangey – has Neuroblatomo cancer and he has received help from the organisation.

People who want to donate to John’s fundraising attempt for Children With Cancer should visit his website: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/JohnDEdwards67

People will also be able to follow John’s progress via the website.