NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – It took six months and a lot of endurance, but a cyclist raising money for military families has finally arrived in New York City.
Ryan Lee Gehris looked up at the World Trade Center with relief after completing a 3,000-mile journey from San Diego on Friday. Gehris rode across America in honor of all the children of fallen soldiers, better known as “Gold Star families.”
The biker’s late mother, Pattie Stein, became a Gold Star child after her father was killed during the Vietnam War. She was only 14 years old at the time.
Gehris’ campaign is called “Pedaling for Pattie.” During his 15-state trip, Gehris raised more than $2,500 for the “Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation” and met hundreds of people and veterans along the way.
“I would think about the sacrifice my grandfather gave for 23 years in the service… and all the men and women serving today,” Gehris said.
The cyclist reportedly got the idea when watching Joe Walsh of the Eagles on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” The rock and roll singer also started up an organization to help out veterans and their families.
Ryan told CBS2’s John Dias he plans is to hang out in New York for a couple of days before shipping his bicycle back to California and flying home.
For more on “Pedaling for Pattie” and other campaigns to support military veterans, click here.