Little River supports veterans in Ride 2 Recovery

Little River Healthcare proudly welcomed riders from the Ride 2 Recovery with a tasty hamburger lunch and snacks at Apache Pass on Tuesday, April 12.

Ride 2 Recovery is a program for U.S. Military veterans whose mission is to save lives by restoring hope and purpose to veterans through cycling programs.

More than 100 riders were welcomed by Little River Healthcare employees, Perry & Perry Builders and Rockdale High School student volunteers as they arrived to Apache Pass. Although it was a rainy day, participants enjoyed hamburgers, cookies, drinks and more, sponsored by Little River Healthcare.

The riders were on Day 2 of their Texas Challenge, a 5-day ride from Houston to Fort Worth. Day 2 covered more than 100 miles from College Station to Georgetown. Participants came from all over the country and with different military backgrounds, yet they shared one common goal: to help and encourage each other. Many participants were missing limbs and had overcome catastrophic experiences, yet they had positive attitudes and were overall enjoying the long and strenuous bike ride.

The Ride 2 Recovery program “brings people together that have similar circumstances,” said rider and military veteran Mike Lage. Lage has lived through an Improvised Explosive Devise (IED) explosion, which he describes as “overrated,” and as a result is missing an arm. He loves participating in Ride 2 Recovery and described it as a support group for injured military vets. Through the bonding on the bike rides, Lage explains, vets are able to open up to one another. “It gets them out of their shell, and they feel better,” he said.

Anthony Pickens, another rider, said that Ride 2 Recovery literally saved his military career. After being injured first in Iraq and then in Afghanistan, Pickens was told that he was going to have to be medically retired. However, when the military saw he was fit enough to participate in the bike challenges, they determined he was fit enough for duty. “There was not even another conversation after that,” said Pickens. He goes on every ride he can and describes his fellow bike riders as “more like family than friends.”

Little River Healthcare is proud to sponsor such an incredible event and cause. This was the second year that Little River participated in the Ride 2 Recovery and we hope to make it an annual tradition.

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