Seven Lakes High School Graduate to Cycle from Texas to Alaska to Help Cure Cancer
AUSTIN, Texas (Covering Katy) – Seven Lakes High School graduate Katie Goodfellow sets off on a bike ride from Austin, Texas, to Anchorage, Alaska, on Friday, June 2. The University of Texas at Austin sophomore is taking part in the Texas 4000 for Cancer. She and about 70 other UT students will make the trek, which will take 70 days. All totaled, the ride will be close to 4,500 miles before it ends on Aug. 11, 2017.
Goodfellow says each rider must raise $4,500 to take part in the event, but her goal is $10,000, which she has not yet met, but she’s very close.
Click here to donate, or donations can be made by check to Texas 4000 with Katie Goodfellow on the memo line. Checks should be mailed to Texas 4000, P.O. Box 6459, Austin, TX , 78762.
In addition to fundraising, the Texas 4000’s mission is to cultivate student leaders and engage communities in the fight against cancer. The idea behind the ride is to raise money for cancer research while spreading the message about curing cancer. That is why the cyclists will split into three groups and take separate routes to Anchorage.
“We get to meet three times as many people by taking three routes,” Katie said.
Katie’s ride will take her through the Rocky Mountains.
A second group will take the Sierra route through California, and along the west coast of the United States and Canada.
The third group will take the Ozark route and go through St. Louis and Chicago, and on into Canada.
All three groups will meet on day 60 and ride the last 10 days together as they converge on Alaska’s capital city of Anchorage.
“I am riding for a couple from Westland Baptist,” Katie said. “Travis Tinnin was fighting terminal cancer, and he lived two years longer than expected. He and his wife Ashli had twins,” she added. “They were church teachers and mentors to me in high school,” she said.
“I got accepted to ride when on the same day Travis was admitted into hospice,” Katie recalled. Since that time, she’s been in training for the ride. While Travis has died, he’s certainly not going to be forgotten by Katie.
Most of the students who are taking part are not competitive cyclists. They are taking part for the good that will be done by the money raised for cancer research. Since the ride was founded in 2004, more than $1 million has been donated to the MD Anderson Cancer Center, Katie said. Some of the funding is being used by the University of Texas biomedical engineering department. Katie is a biomedical engineering major at UT Austin.
“It’s really cool to see the firsthand research that’s going on,” Katie said.
Riders have spent 18 months in training. It has been a life-changing experience for all of them according to Katie.
“I don’t think anyone on my team is leaving with the exact same reasons that they joined,” Katie said.
She says her parents will be supporting her too, and following her journey digitally via the internet. They are from the United Kingdom and returned there after she graduated from high school.
“My family was supportive from day one,” Katie said. She admits that at first, she was not sure how her father would react to news that his daughter was riding across the continent. She found him to be very supportive. “I was surprised because my dad is such practical guy,” she said.
Once word spread that she was taking part in the Texas 4000 for Cancer, she’s become even more aware of the impact that cancer has had on her friends.
“It’s really surprising hearing from people that I’ve known for a long time, but did not know how cancer had effected their lives,” Katie said.
Covering Katy will be following Katie throughout her journey this summer. We will provide updates during the 70-day ride, and we will chronicle Katie’s unique experiences over the next 10 weeks.
Written by Dennis Spellman