A Tucson Man is Fighting Child Abuse One Pedal at a Time
Riding for Relief
by Sara O'Meara and Yvonne Fedderson
Using his bicycle to try and stop the cycle of child abuse, Ledbetter is on a mission to end a devastating problem that afflicts millions of innocent victims every year.
He's got a long road ahead of him. Ledbetter estimates the ride to be about 1,900 miles from Vancouver, British Columbia to Tijuana Mexico. "I'm going to ride through Washington and pick up highway 101 in Oregon until I get to Highway 1 and parallel the Pacific Ocean. It's going to take about 6 weeks."
You can keep track of Ledbetter's ride by logging onto his webpage. He'll be keeping a journal for people to read.
Riding the entire length of the west coast is a pretty amazing feat when you consider how old he is. "I'm 72." That's right, 72 years old. His secret? Plenty of exercise and a healthy lifestyle.
"I started working out when I was about 16 and I just never quit. And another thing that happened was I was introduced by a doctor to an amazing nutritional technology. It's called Isagenix and I've been on it for three years and my doctor informed me I'm healthier now than I've ever been since I've been his patient, it's amazing."
Isagenix is helping to promote George on his cross country ride, and he'll need all the energy he can muster for the grueling journey, pedaling through aches and pains for a good cause. "It's for an organization called Childhelp. It provides total care for abused and abandoned kids, crack babies, meth babies, and they take total care of them."
Steven Stirling of Childhelp says the organization is thankful to Ledbetter for his commitment to children who really need help. "We applaud George for his courage to take a stand and say ‘I'm going to do something about it because only we can help prevent child abuse.'"
Stirling says this ride will bring much needed awareness to a problem not many people like to talk about. "Every day four children die due to child abuse in the United States. Every ten seconds there's a report of child abuse and that's three million child abuse reported cases each year."
Although the ride is for the children, Ledbetter is excited for the experience, taking in the beauty of America on a bicycle. "You're not driving, you're not going so fast....you're really part of the environment, it's great I like it."
So does Sterling and the rest of the people at Childhelp. "It's so incredible that someone would take their time, their personal time, to do something like this. It's a long way. I'm standing out here right now, and it's hot and I can't imagine riding a bicycle from Canada to Mexico to make a statement that says I want to do something about preventing child abuse. There's so many people out there that can do something and he's doing something about it."