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JROTC cadets host St. Jude bike ride
Riders Jessica Toro and Cynthia Souimaniphanh, both cadets in BI’s JROTC Tiger Battalion, enjoy the good weather as they peddle bicycles in support of St. Jude Hospital. - photo by Photo provided.
The Bradwell Institute Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps Program had its 13th annual St. Jude Bike-A-Thon on Sept. 25 on BI’s campus. More than 100 people gathered to help raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
SGM (ret.) Larry Morning, a JROTC instructor and event coordinator, praised the cadets and the community’s willingness to support the event. The Bike-A-Thon raised more than $5,000.
Cadet Lt. Col. Chris Payne, the Tiger Battalion commander, said “The Bike-A-Thon was a great success. We raised over $800 more than last year, and in this economy I consider this a great accomplishment.”  
St. Jude Hospital, the largest pediatric research center in the world, was founded in 1962 by the late entertainer, Danny Thomas. The hospital specializes in the research and treatment of childhood cancer and other childhood diseases. It has more than 5,000 children in active status and treats children without regard to race, religion, creed or ability to pay. In fact, families never pay for treatments that are not covered by insurance.
The Bike-A-Thon’s top rider was Cadet Thara Larkins, who rode 64 miles during the six-hour event. Cadet Joshua Calhoun took top honors for raising the most money — almost $300. Calhoun attributed his success to his commitment to St. Jude and to the Bradwell faculty and staff that supported him with donations.
Morning said “During the past 13 years, the BI cadets have raised over $65,000 through their annual Bike-A-Thons for St. Jude’s Hospital and cancer research.”  
Currently, there are four children from Liberty County receiving treatment at St. Jude Hospital.
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