Ride For Doug has raised $130K

Ninth annual ride set for June 7

Cam Penner, Doug Penner and Vancouver Island firefighter Kerry Zado. Zado has already held one Ride For Doug in the Victoria area, and is holding a second ride this August. The ninth annual Ride For Doug in Langley is set for June 7.

Cam Penner, Doug Penner and Vancouver Island firefighter Kerry Zado. Zado has already held one Ride For Doug in the Victoria area, and is holding a second ride this August. The ninth annual Ride For Doug in Langley is set for June 7.

It was nine years ago when Cam Penner made the decision he needed to do something to make a difference in his young son Doug’s life.

Doug was three at the time and had been diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

Muscular Dystrophy is a genetic disorder that causes muscles in the body to gradually decline and weaken. Over time, people with muscular dystrophy may lose the ability to walk, speak and ultimately breathe. For many the disorder is fatal. There is presently no known cure, or even effective treatments. The road ahead for the kids is hard, said Penner.

That is when “Ride For Doug” was born. It’s a charity motorcycle ride through picturesque Fraser Valley aimed at raising money and awareness for Muscular Dystrophy.  This year, the ninth annual ride is set for June 7.

Now Doug is 12 and the Ride has raised $130,000 in eight years.

“With a record setting turnout last year of 113 riders, and over 350 people at the barbecue, we raised more than $30,000 for the Vancouver chapter of Muscular Dystrophy Canada,” said Cam Penner.

Cam said as Doug gets older he looks forward to the ride more and more and has made friends along the way.

The Grade 7 Langley Christian student is doing well and ‘enjoying life,’ said Dad.

“He is getting weaker, but he is still walking, able to go up and down stairs, and ride with me on my motorcycle. He is in the transition years of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. These are the years where most of his peers are using wheelchairs.”

Ride For Doug provides motorcyclists in Langley, throughout the Lower Mainland the opportunity to get together, go on a ride, and raise some money.

“The thing that amazes me each year — even after eight of them — is the powerful emotional lift that having all those bikes riding with you and your family in support of the cause,” said Penner. “That’s the kind of emotional lift that we need to draw down on during the tough times. Knowing that there’s that many people in your corner really helps on those days where you are sitting at the hospital, and having to make some really tough decisions.”

Muscular Dystrophy Canada uses some of the money raised to provide support and equipment assistance to families living with MD. Other funds are used for research in the quest for a cure. Several research projects are showing great promise, and funding has never been more critical.

This year’s ride takes place Sunday, June 7. Registration from noon to 12:45 p.m., and a 1 p.m. departure time. Riders will return by 5 p.m. for a barbecue. The ride will start and end in the parking lot of the South Langley Church (20098 22nd Ave.)

Registration for the ride will be $20 – but this fee is waived if you arrive with $50 or more in donations.

For more information, click here.