By: David Cossitt President TPFFCS, Ambassador CFFF
“As the days flew by, donations continued to come in alongside complementary meals which showed the team how big and supportive their community truly was.“
With last year’s 2020 ride shortened due to the pandemic, athletes in the TPFFCS Memorial Ride to Ottawa were bound and determined to get every kilometer in this year. Twenty dedicated riders raised several thousand dollars for the ride fund making this year’s ride a great success. Several Toronto area riders gathered at Toronto Fire Services East training location to help pack supplies and to load up the bikes in the support vehicles. After dinner and some laughs, plus a flight to pick up one of their regular riders from Newfoundland, it was off to bed but sleep was interrupted by one heck of a thunderstorm that threatened even the best laid plans for the team’s departure in the morning. Luckily by the time the ride team was done organizing their leave from Toronto to their departure in Hamilton, the rain had stopped and the sky started to clear. Hamilton Fire Training Academy was where they had scheduled their departure from and the entire team was ready to go. With riders from Ottawa arriving by bus the previous night, the team was complete.
With nothing in their way, the riders set out with an escort from Toronto Fire Services Pipes and Drums and Hamilton Police. Covering over 200 km on day one, riders not only hammered through the distance but honored the fallen of 911 by organizing team push up and pull up challenges. The weather was on their side alongside support from local fire and police stations. The team was greeted by friendly allied agencies at every new town/city border and the support and camaraderie fueled the team’s desire to make this their best ride yet.
As the days flew by, donations continued to come in alongside complementary meals which showed the team how big and supportive their community truly was.
Ottawa Police helped the team round up their ride and as the they turned onto the Parkway everyone was anxious to get to the Memorial. As the riders approached the finish line, they were greeted by several Ottawa Fire apparatus as well as Ottawa Fire Pipes and Drums.
Taking three days and close to 550km, the team made the ride mostly unscathed (minus a few crashes). The entire team are grateful for all the support and donations and know that this ride would not have happened without the support their sponsors. Five years ago, the ride started out with 13 riders raising $5500.00 that year for the Canadian Fallen Firefighters Foundation. The ride has now grown to 56 riders from three provinces and has raised over $87000.00 bringing the team’s five-year total to $153,000.00. The ride has now become the largest fundraiser for the CFFF. The team can’t wait until next year to see where they can take this ride.
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