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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Chief's Road to Recovery

If you're looking for a bicycle ride for a good cause, keep Saturday, May 31, open for Chief's Road to Recovery bicycle ride in Belleville, Ill.

This is the benefit ride for Gerry "Chief" Frierdich, the Belleville recumbent cyclist and photographer critically injured Aug. 19 when he was struck by a pickup truck on South Green Mount Road in Belleville.

Friends and family of Gerry, along with the Belleville Area Bicycling and Eating Society and the Touring Cyclist store in Fairview Heights, Ill., met earlier today to start making plans for the ride. In the weeks to come, we will be seeking sponsorships from Belleville-area businesses to make the ride a success.

Also in the weeks to come, we will be setting up a Web page for the ride at the ChiefGetWell.com site, which provides updates about Gerry's recovery, and setting up online registration for the ride through Active.com. When both sites become operational, we'll post information here and other cycling Web sites to spread the word.

Gerry is making progress in his recovery at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, but there's still a long way to go. Gerry's unable to walk or ride a bike, but he is able to move his arms.

There's a strong possibility Gerry will return to Belleville this month. Proceeds from the ride will be used to help pay for his rehabilitation, renovations needed for his home and other expenses not covered by insurance.

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