Langley’s Chris Vecchies will once again participate in the Ride to Conquer Cancer on Aug. 27, cycling 200 km through the Pacific Northwest.

Langley man riding 200 km to conquer cancer

Cyclist Chris Vecchies on the road to Seattle in annual Ride to Conquer Cancer fundraiser

There was a time when riding a bike from Vancouver to Seattle, Wash. would have been nearly impossible for Chris Vecchies.

The 34-year-old Langley man recalls being “very overweight” while growing up — a struggle he overcame in his 20s when he lost 110 pounds.

It was through his fitness journey that he developed a love for cycling — first by commuting 20 km to work everyday on a mountain bike — and eventually through daily rides on a road bike.

So when he first heard about the Ride to Conquer Cancer in 2014, Vecchies jumped on the opportunity to participate.

Benefitting the BC Cancer Foundation, this is the third year — and fourth ride — Vecchies is participating in. He will join thousands of other cyclists in the 200 km journey throughout the Pacific Northwest Aug. 27 and 28, as well as the Alberta ride Aug. 6 and 7.

“I love riding my bike, and I love helping people,” Vecchies said.

“It’s changed my life … everyone goes through dark stages in life, and because of the cycling team (with Ride to Conquer Cancer) and that support, it helped me through that period.”

Originally, Vecchies signed up for the ride as an individual in honour of his uncle — a prostate cancer survivor — and a man who was a father figure to him after his own dad passed away at a young age. However, Vecchies was soon recruited to join the Riders for Ryders for team, which was started by Jimi Brockett for his son, Ryder, who passed away from cancer at the age of four and a half.

Today, Vecchies is co-captain of Riders for Ryders — participating for not only his uncle, but for all people who are touched by cancer — and has helped the group raise more than $2.5 million for cancer research.

“Every team in the Ride to Conquer Cancer becomes a family, not just a cycling team,” Vecchies said.

“That’s how life works. You don’t realize it — it’s karma. You do something good, and good comes back to you. It makes you feel good.

“For me, it’s been nothing short of amazing.”

Although riding 200 km can seem daunting, Vecchies says the team atmosphere, and little yellow flags representing cancer survivors found along the route, are what keep him going.

Ultimately, the goal for everyone who rides is to fund research so that future generations can live in a world without cancer, he said.

“If everyone on Earth just helps out a little bit, we will definitely be living in a better place.”

For more information on Riders for Ryders and to make a donation, visit http://www.ridersforryders.com.

More information is available at www.conquercancer.ca.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Scouts in Langley learn how to communicate during emergencies

Weekend event at Camp McLean part of worldwide Jamboree On The Air and Jamboree On The Internet

Halloween on horseback

Langley riders club celebrates the season

ELECTION 18: Langley Township, you chose Jack Froese for mayor

Township voters went with a familiar face, handing incumbent a third term as mayor

Mayoral results from across B.C.

Voters in 162 municipalities in B.C. set to elect mayor, council, school board and more

Tommy Chong says cannabis legalization makes him proud to be a Canadian

Legendary marijuana advocate and comedian celebrates cultural milestone at Kelowna event

Newly-elected Lower Mainland mayor won’t drink his city’s tap water

White Rock’s Darryl Walker is concerned about its quality

Kennedy Stewart challenged with building bridges as mayor of Vancouver: expert

The former NDP MP, who ran as an Independent, will lead 10 councillors divided across four parties

B.C. Youtuber to seal himself ‘in a jar’ to demonstrate impacts of climate change

Kurtis Baute wants to see how long he can last in a 1,000 cubic foot, air-tight greenhouse

One of Taiwan’s fastest trains derails, killing at least 18

The train was carrying more than 360 people

Scheer marks one-year countdown to federal election with campaign-style speech

Conservative Leader insists that it will be Justin Trudeau who ‘makes it personal’

Canada Post union announces rotating strikes in four Canadian cities

Mail will still be delivered but it will be delayed

Vancouver drag queens receive royal treatment during Kootenay Pride

Vancouver drag queens discuss the importance of Pride and growing acceptance of LGBTQ community

B.C. VIEWS: Residents have had enough of catering to squatters

Media myth of homeless victims offends those who know better

Most Read