AKRON, OH (May 16, 2013) – For 10 to 12 days beginning June 11, Cassie Schumacher will ride solo in the Race Across America to raise awareness and support of veterans’ issues through the non-profit organization, Pedal For Heroes USA. She will embark on an extraordinary journey that will test the utmost limits of her physical endurance, mental resilience and commitment.
As a competitor in the 2013 Race Across America (RAAM), Schumacher will race her bicycle, pedaling on her own power across the length of the entire American continent, 3,000 miles from Pacific to Atlantic, stopping to sleep only when necessary.
Schumacher became an advocate for veterans’ issues when her father, a Vietnam veteran, chose to become homeless in part due to PTSD. She is devoted to the effort of helping thousands of veterans, returning home from war, to readjust back into society.
“I'm pushing the limits of my abilities to bring awareness to the needs of our nation’s veterans,” said Schumacher, one of only five women who are racing RAAM solo. “I want to prove that it is possible to overcome huge obstacles to be the change you want to see in the world.” By representing Pedal For Heroes in her RAAM solo race, she hopes to inspire support for returning veterans.
The toughest endurance event in the world, RAAM offers long-distance cyclists the opportunity to challenge themselves to the height of their abilities. Solo riders complete the course in approximately 9 days, traveling 3,000 miles and climbing over 170,000 feet. These athletes brave the desert, plains and mountain weather, lead a crew in a mini-organization of support, and raise thousands of dollars for charities around the world.
While the obstacles facing the racers are daunting, Schumacher feels they are minor compared to what many of the soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan are facing.
“The many severe issues returning veterans face everyday are alarming,” said Schumacher. “Something must be done, and I hope that Pedal For Heroes will be the catalyst that sparks a greater awareness and a step into providing the healing services our returning soldiers need.”
For information on how to get involved, visit Schumacher’s site at www.Wheels4Change.org. Fund-raising is reaching a critical need to support the required crews during the race. Interested donors can offer financial support at the website.
Schumacher’s progress in this year’s Race Across America will be posted on the RAAM website and on her website by her crew.
About Pedal For Heroes
Pedal For Heroes is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to building awareness of veterans’ issues and raising funds for local veterans’ charities to help veterans, serve military families and honor Ohio fallen soldiers. Their annual indoor event takes place on the last Sunday in February to honor the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice for freedom. The organization offers bicycle programs for veterans and also supports healing efforts for veterans with PTSD at the Red Bird Center for Healing in Cambridge, Ohio. For more information, visit www.PedalForHeroesUSA.org.
About the Race Across America (RAAM)
The Race Across America, known as the “world’s toughest bicycle race”, will set over 250 competitors on a 3,000-mile route stretching from Oceanside, California to Annapolis, Maryland. Athletes race continuously day and night, on their own power or sharing the challenge with a team, and a crew of 8 -15 people following in support vehicles with food and supplies for the race. These courageous adventurers brave heat, wind, thunderstorms, altitude, the dark of night, fatigue and sleep deprivation, cross several major mountain ranges and raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity. For more information and race updates, see http://www.raceacrossamerica.org.
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