Teens ride to conquer cancer

Anthony Kita, 16, and his riding friend Nate Winsor, 16, stand in front of their school, Monarch Park. The two participated in the Ride to Conquer Cancer on June 11-12.

At first glance, Anthony Kita and Nate Winsor would seem to be nothing but just your typical teenage boys who love to hang out, play video games, and likely give their parents a hard time. But if you spend a few minutes chatting with them you’ll get to know these two very well-spoken, mature and caring adolescents who just love to share stories and adventures.

The two teens have been friends since they started at Monarch Park Collegiate. They both admit they disliked each other at first, and it wasn’t until they joined the school’s bike club that their friendship began.

It was in bike club that the two riders spent many hours rebuilding their bikes.

“I rode on a bike I built from scratch…it’s a labour of love,” said Nate.

Nate and Anthony registered for the Ride to Conquer Cancer that took place earlier this month as a way to fulfill their extra-curricular hours demanded by the IB program they are enrolled in at Monarch. But they soon found that the issue of cancer was closer to home than they had realized. Nate’s grandfathers are both cancer survivors.

They set a fundraising goal of $5,000 and are currently up to $4,000 and still collecting funds.

Speaking of the riding experience, the two boys described an unforgettable experience. They were both overwhelmed not only by the challenge of the ride itself, but also by the number of volunteers and supporters along the way.

“When we got to the top of a huge hill at the 60th kilometre there was a sign that said ‘Bless you riders, survivors live here’…then you realize this is why you’re doing it,” said Nate.

But their ride did not go without a glitch. With only five kilometres to go, Nate took a nasty tumble after riding his bike into a pot hole on the road. The fall not only destroyed his front wheel, but also caused some major scrapes and bruises.

Anthony, though, was on hand to help fix the bike (and Nate) and the two were off to the finish line.

Anthony and Nate are hoping to join the event again next year, but maybe as volunteers as they found the fundraising a bit challenging.

They thanked Nate’s father, Fulford Winsor, for all his help with the training and fundraising efforts.

“He was instrumental in helping us get donors,” said Nate.

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