South Bend, Indiana

 Ride For Kids South Bend, Indiana

Brain tumors are the most deadly of all childhood cancers. Fear, anxiety and hopelessness are what parents often experience upon hearing the words, “your child has a brain tumor.” Each patient’s prognosis for long-term survival depends on many factors and shockingly 70-80% of children diagnosed with a brain tumor do not make it to adulthood.

2010 will be the 8th annual Ride For Kids ® event in the state of Indiana, the 6th annual for South Bend.  Last year was a blockbuster day in South Bend with over 500 motorcyclists and supporters coming together to raise over $91,000.00 for the cause.

We were fortunate to have eleven brain tumor survivors attend last years ride, their ages ranged from 5 years to 30+ years of age. One of our ‘stars’, 11 year old Lucas, was also one of our top fundraisers who brought in over $5,500.00.

The ride was police escorted by the South Bend Police, St. Joseph County Sheriff’s Department, the La Porte County Sheriff’s Department and State Police departments.  We started the ride at Pinhook Park on a beautiful Sunday morning, with the ride lasting about 1 1/2 hours. The motorcyclists returned to have a sack lunch while they enjoy a “Celebration of Life” program.

During the ‘Celebration of Life’, the ‘Stars’ were all on stage sharing their experiences about the motorcycle ride they just went on, smiling and enjoying every minute of this day. Their parents shared their experiences of how difficult it was to see their child go through the ordeals of having a brain tumor, not knowing what tomorrow will bring.  Dr. Tim Griffin, medical director of oncology at Memorial Hospital told everyone about the importance of their donations to help fight this terrible disease.

Another VIP guest, head football coach at the University of Notre Dame spoke about having a special needs child and what families go through. He told the crowd that “they were the nuts and bolts of the PBTF”.

We have this special event annually to raise money for research and to someday find the cause and cure for Pediatric Brain Tumors. Of every dollar that we collect, $0.89 goes towards research, scholarships for brain tumor survivors and Family Support programs.

Please join us on July 11th, 2010 at 8:00 a.m. EST at Pinhook Park, South Bend, Indiana to give hope to the children and young adults who suffer from this terrible disease!



RFK History

The Ride for Kids® is a motorcyclist’s program that is helping find the cause and cure of pediatric brain tumors. It also serves as a educational support program for patients, their families, and the medical community.

Mike and Dianne Traynor started the Ride for Kids® program in Atlanta, Ga., in 1984, when a friend’s child was diagnosed with a brain tumor. After watching the tragic deaths of many children, they set out to help find the cause and cure of this childhood killer by soliciting help from their friends in the motorcycling community.

With the support of America’s motorcyclists, the program began to raise awareness and funds to pay for research in the nation’s leading brain tumor research centers. The success of the first Ride for Kids® event in Atlanta led to the program’s expansion to Chicago in 1989. Mike and Dianne soon decided to devote full-time attention to their advocacy and fundraising efforts, and started the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation (PBTF) in 1991.

The PBTF is honored to be the official charity of the Honda Rider’s Club of America (HRCA), which has been the presenting sponsor of Ride for Kids® since 1991. Thanks to the significant support of American Honda Motor Company’s motorcycle division, Honda dealers and other motorcycle industry companies, the program has raised more than $34 million for pediatric brain tumor research.

This support has helped make PBTF the largest nonprofit source of funding for pediatric brain tumor research outside of the U.S. government. In addition to research grants to medical laboratories, PBTF funds started the Central Brain Tumor Registry of the U.S., a national database of disease and patient information.

Thanks to the efforts of Ride for Kids®, progress is being made in the search for the answer to this terrible affliction. Each year laboratories worldwide take steps toward new and more innovative treatments for young patients. However, until the cause is isolated the prognosis of these children will continue to cast doubt on their recovery, and for those who survive, their resulting quality of life.

But with your help, there is hope. What began in 1984 as one couple’s quest to help these children has now become the target of thousands of caring motorcyclists who work diligently to help these children by raising funds to fight this terrible disease. Together we will cure the kids!

AHM Pays Tribute to Mike Traynor, Co-founder of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation

JAN. 15 -American Honda Motor Co., Inc. this afternoon paid tribute to Mike Traynor, the co-founder of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation (PBTF) and Ride for Kids®, who passed away on September 12, 2009. As a token of respect, a tree was planted on the Torrance campus as a living memorial. A plaque commemorating his decades of work on behalf of many children afflicted with brain tumors lies at the base of the tree. It reads: “A man never stands so tall as when he stoops to help a child. Planted in memory of Mike Traynor, co-founder of Ride for Kids and the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation.”

The tree is located just inside the Van Ness entrance of the campus.

Remarking on the relationship between American Honda and the Foundation, Ray Blank, senior vice president of the Motorcycle Division, said: “For more than 25 years, American Honda has enjoyed a wonderful working relationship with the PBTF and its Ride for Kids fundraising events. Beyond our relationship with the Foundation, we also enjoyed a close personal relationship with Mike.

“One big reason Mike and Honda were such a good fit is because we had so much in common. Mike loved facing tough challenges head on. He knew research and technology were often the keys to winning. And he worked tirelessly for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation, but also as an ambassador for the sport of motorcycling,” Blank continued.

AHM Pledges Continued Support for Ride for Kids

“It seems very fitting that today’s memorial to Mike is a living memorial, a new beginning of life that will continue to grow strong for years to come. But as a greater sign of respect, Honda also intends to keep supporting the Ride for Kids–that’s really the proper tribute to Mike,” Blank said.

Dianne Traynor, President and Chairman of the Board of the PBTF, who attended the ceremony said: “Mike would have been so proud.”

Mike TraynorThis plaque lies at the base of the tree planted in honor of Mike Traynor, co-founder of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation.

The TreeThe tree is located just inside the Van Ness entrance on the Torrance campus.

AttendeesAttendees at the tribute to Mike Traynor included (l-r) AHM SVP Ray Blank, AHM President & CEO Tetsuo Iwamura, PBTF President & Chairman Dianne Traynor, PBTF Exec. Dir. Brian Traynor, AHM Sr. Mgr & PBTF Board Member Wayne Toyota and SVP Gary Kessler.