Inspiration can be found in many places and make people do many things in their lives. For Tim Leyshan his inspiration came from his Mother and Uncle’s long battles with illness. However in the beginning of 2011 he heard of an 11-year-old girl from North Delta who was fighting cancer for the second time in her short life.
Samantha Mantyka was that girl who, over time became Tim’s shining light, with her infectious smile and huge heart this girl had been fighting back against all odds. On July 31, 2011 Samantha lost her battle to cancer.
Tim made the decision to ride a bicycle across Canada to raise funds for the Smiles for Sam foundation.
It has taken him two years to work out the logistics to do the crossing which started in Victoria and will end in November in St. John’s, Newfoundland.
Tim decided to dedicate his ride to Sam and the Smiles for Sam in hopes it will help other children like Sam get through this tough time as well as to help the families struggling both financially and emotionally. All of the proceeds from the Ride will be split 50/50 between the Smiles for Sam Foundation and The Canadian Cancer Society.
“It has been a difficult test to bring this together but we have it. We started on August 22 in Victoria and I feel better than I thought I would. I am looking forward to getting a better pace going on the Prairies,” Leyshan said.
In a press release the group helping Leyshan do the ride described him as “a warrior-on-wheels. As many of us continue to live day to day with the fears of cancer and its unforeseen future, there is still hope in the eyes of many who challenge these fears and continue to press on, searching for answers…Like many people before him, he is not attempting to save the world, but simply to help those who are ill along with their families, by providing them with improved quality of life.”
The native Australian is also getting some family help as his brother Josh has come over from Australia to do what he can to support him throughout the months ahead.
As for his goal for the project Leyshan said he hopes to “ Raise $1 million. Our major sponsor which is Ec0-Fuel Saver has come on board to provide us with a fuel supplement that cuts down on the cost of gas and they are also selling their product in Canadian Tire Across Canada. For every single bottle they sell in the next 75 days, a dollar will come to us. They are hoping to sell one million bottles.”
The group is also helping set up fundraising events along the way and will be visiting schools to share the story behind the ride.
“We want other kids to be inspired by the story and to get the word out to as many people as possible,” Leyshan said.
Anyone interested in learning more about the ride, setting up a time for the group to drop by to talk or donate at www.cycle4life11.com
CYCLE 4 LIFE Sponsors include: Holycrap.ca (breakfast cereal), Speedpro Graphics, Q Energy, Boston Pizza, PostIdol Media (Webdesign), Nanaimo Brazilian Jujitsu, Eco-Fuel Saver, Lisa Marie Photography, Refuse to Fall, Beaver Buzz, Rhonda Cox, Moonrider Productions, Mark Halliday, Smiles for Sam, Jade Bell (Jadebell.ca), Penny & Wayman Crosby, Vince Vaccaro (vincevaccaro.com), Alexandra Staseson/MoveThrough Productions Writing Services.