Delta Police will be well-represented on this year’s Cops for Cancer Tour de Valley team.
The annual ride, which was launched in 1994, sees law enforcement and emergency services personnel cycle hundreds of km to raise money for pediatric cancer research and support programs like Camp Goodtimes. COVID-19 has shortened this year’s tour to five days (Sept. 20 to 24) that will feature various stops throughout the Fraser Valley, including Delta.
The 20-member Tour de Valley team includes four DPD constables: Jeremy Pearce, Terra Schmuland, Bianca Boyce and Grayson Hawkings. They will be joined by officers from Chilliwack, Hope and Surrey RCMP detachments, along with BC Sheriff and BC Correction officers. The goal is to collectively raise $250,000 with various fundraising activities already underway.
The Delta officers will be looking to collect $5,000 donations this Saturday (June 9) with a spin-a-thon at Thrifty’s in Tsawwassen.
The event will run from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. with the four constables taking turns on the stationary bikes. They will also receive other department support including guest appearances from Chief Neil Dubord (11 a.m.) and Deputy Chief Michelle Davey (1 p.m.), along with past Tour De Valley participants.
Pearce is the lone returning Tour de Valley member and he is delighted to have three of his colleagues as “rookies” on the team.
To build-up endurance the team has been doing monthly rides since April and the Delta officers have done additional excursions on their own. As provincial health restrictions continue to loosen, the plan is to do one final training run from Hope to Boston Bar in August, a round trip of about 130 km.
“We all worked together on the same platoon at one time and we’re friends with one another,” explained Pearce. “It does get harder when the weather starts to get hot, but it is super fun too. You just need to get used to sitting on the saddle for a long time.”
The officers have quickly grasped the fundraising component of the tour. Boyce recently teamed up with Centennial Foodservice for meat sales that raised $1,600.
Tour de Valley is one of five charity rides held across the country, all to raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society’s childhood cancer research. Tour de Coast is the other B.C. team and is joined by Tour de Rock, Tour de North, Tour de Golden Horseshoe and Pedal for Hope.
Typically the ride would take place over nine days, but coordinator Sonia Ghag is pleased to see this event’s proceed while working around COVID-19 health restrictions.
“Things are looking good and favorable. We can move forward with what we have planned. Not quite same as past with full package but we remain determined to improve the cancer experience by ensuring children with cancer live longer and have the best possible quality of life during the pandemic and beyond,” she said.
Those who can’t make it out to Thrifty’s on Saturday can still contribute by visiting the Tour de Valley donation page.