Fox News Phoenix | myfoxphoenix.com | October 12, 2011
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - It's a grueling ride, but the cyclists who join it every year get their motivation from the Marines they're riding for.
The group is headed to San Diego and for every mile they ride for injured Marines, they're raising money.
It will take three days to get to the destination - the Marine Corps depot. They started at a strip mall in north Scottsdale and will cover 430 miles.
Among the 70 riders was Angel Gomez, an injured Marine.
"I got hit by a road side bomb and I took shrapnel in the head," said Gomez, who lost the use of the right side of his body.
The money raised from this ride helped him with medical bills.
John Greenway came up the idea of the ride after watching his nephew graduate from Marine boot camp and prepare to fight overseas.
"I decided at that point that I would do something that would help give back to the people who are taking care of us," said Greenway.
It's called the Ride for Semper Fi. Many former and current Marines in the valley join the ride which is in its fourth year.
Rick Santana, a former Marine says, "After serving eight years in the Marine Corps, it has been very difficult to see our brother and sister Marines come back having to deal with the difficulty of combat.
These riders will raise over $300,000 in three days for injured Marines and their families.
The cyclists spend five months of intense training, riding 100 miles a day to prepare for the event.