Our fellow Fountain Hills resident and Four Peaks Rotarian, Buzz Ponce, is gearing up to go on the ride of a lifetime!  Buzz will be riding his bike from the Pacific to the Atlantic coasts this summer on a very worthy charity fundraising drive. From May through June, Buzz will be racking up the miles in order to help bring attention to Warriors Heart, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping active military, veterans and first responders who are coping with everything from PTSD to addiction and chemical dependency. The extensive treatment facility is located in Bandera, Texas, near San Antonio.
Rotarian Buzz plans to depart from Oceanside, California, on May 1st and arrive in St. Augustine, Florida, in early July. This nearly 3,000-mile trip will likely be the biggest challenge of his life, but it’s one that Buzz says he’s excited to undertake. The cause, Warriors Heart, is explained on his website: buzzponc4.wixsite.com/buzz-ponce. There, you can read up on his trip itinerary, find a link to the Warriors Heart website, view the blog he plans to update throughout the journey, and donate to his cause. Buzz says it’s important to understand that any donation made through his website goes directly to the charity, not to his bike ride. He’s covering all of the ride expenses himself!
Buzz has purchased a “rickety, old RV” as a support vehicle and he will be assisted by his high school friend, Dave Rickabaugh, who will be driving the rig. It will provide shelter and storage, allowing Buzz to focus on biking without needing to rely on hauling camping supplies on his bike, or tracking down a motel each night.  Barring illness, breakdowns and weather delays, Buzz hopes to complete his journey by July 1st. He expects the weather to be the biggest challenge, especially since he’s not used to the humidity of the Gulf States. He said Texas will also be a tough ride due to the monotonous scenery.
“I’m so looking forward to this whole adventure! I’ll be turning 70-years-old during this ride, but this is something I can and I want to do. I want to do it before I no longer can. I wanted to do something ‘different’ when I turned 70, and this is certainly different.”
The fundraising portion of Buzz’s ride is just beginning. We are hoping that his fellow Four Peaks Rotarians, Friends of Rotary, and those individuals who believe in supporting our military and first responders, will pledge a few pennies per mile towards supporting Warriors Heart.
Based on his anticipated 2,800 mile journey, (calculated using Google Maps), below are the results of what various pledges-per-mile will be:
Pledge Per Mile and Total Donation Result
1 cent = $28
2 cents = $56
3 cents = $84
4 cents = $112
5 cents = $140
6 cents = $168
7 cents = $196
8 cents = $224
9 cents = $252
10 cents - $280
E-mail Bill Beamish to add your name and pledge to the club support list: azbeamish@msn.com