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Father and Son Bicycling Across America in Support of Hospice in Sub-Saharan Africa

Saturday, June 12, 2010 General News J E 4
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"Washington-Maine Line" Ride to go from Anacortes, WA to Portland, ME

ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Father and son, Dave and Evan Fuller of Spokane, Washington will bicycle coast to coast - from Anacortes, Washington to Portland, Maine - to raise support for the work of hospice care across Africa.

The Fullers are beginning their 3,500 mile ride on June 14 in support of the non-profit organization, FHSSA. FHSSA (which began as the Foundation for Hospices in Sub-Saharan Africa) builds partnerships to enhance compassionate care in Africa and is celebrating a decade of impact.

Their goal is to ride an average of 100 miles each day and complete their journey in approximately 35 days. Since January 1, the Fullers have been each logging 80-180 miles a week in their respective towns - Dave in Spokane and Evan in Seattle.

The idea of riding across the country began in August 2009. By October, Dave had researched the logistics of such a journey. Together, during the holiday season, they discussed the idea of raising funds for a non-profit organization.

"Our family had recently seen the compassionate benefits of hospice and palliative care with the loss of my brother, Larry. This experience and our new-found awareness of end-of-life care led to conversations with my parents about their care wishes. This all served as a springboard," said Dave Fuller. "We found FHSSA online, we read through their goals, talked it over briefly, and knew it was something we wanted to support."

Evan added, "We liked the idea that a portion of the funds [will] pay for bicycles necessary to deliver care...the bicycle part was the deal-breaker, because there's a myriad of funds worth supporting, and this one seemed personal on a few levels."

"Our experiences with hospice programs in Washington have been excellent, and it's a topic that doesn't receive a lot of discussion day to day, at least among my friends," said Evan.

Adding to the passion that is fueling their journey, Dr. Everett "Ev" Fuller, Dave's father and Evan's grandfather, receives daily assistance from a hospice program in Spokane. This support comes alongside the loving care of his wife, Liz, of 67 years.

"Ev and Liz served as medical missionaries for the majority of their careers - as a doctor and nurse respectively - in under-served populations in South America, the Middle East and Africa," Dave said, adding that this bicycle ride is "an opportunity for me to pay tribute to my dad for what he has done for me."

Dave added, "We have much respect for hospice as an organization for their work locally, but also wanted to help be a part of the larger picture...and led us to FHSSA and its work overseas."

"FHSSA is most grateful for the Fullers amazing commitment to making this journey to raise funds as well as build awareness of the tremendous difference all gifts can make in supporting compassionate care. We are humbled by their dedication and their passion," said John Mastrojohn, III, FHSSA's Executive Director.

Dave Fuller is a PE teacher at Chase Middle School and assistant cross-country coach at Ferris High School. Evan Fuller is a student at the University of Washington in the School of Pharmacy.

Follow their journey online at http://thewashingtonmaineline.blogspot.com.

To support their efforts, see the route, or subscribe to the RSS feed from their journey, please visit www.fhssa.org and click on the "Washington-Maine Line" link (http://www.fhssa.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=3543).

SOURCE FHSSA
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