COLORADO SPRINGS — It’s amazing how one simple act can set a chain of events in motion. Last July, I accepted an invitation from someone off of Facebook to meet up for a bicycle ride in Colorado Springs.
That someone is now a close friend who has since introduced me to a whole group of people I call close friends. I rode my first 100-mile single day ride, which is called a "century in cycling," and most recently completed another very challenging ride.
In September, I rode 350 miles across Colorado from the Wyoming border to the New Mexico border in four days with Team SHIELD616, a Colorado cycling team - for the purpose of raising money for protective ballistics gear for first responders. SHIELD616 is a Colorado Springs-based nonprofit organization founded by former Colorado Springs Police Department officer, Jake Skifstad.
I also tackled the biggest project of my journalistic career along with some very talented help, documenting the 4-day journey to share how this group of people who support SHIELD616 and their efforts to better protect first responders has impacted me and others. The Border to Border with SHIELD616 documentary will air the Friday after Thanksgiving on News5.
What began with a simple invitation to go for a ride with a former chaplain of the Colorado Springs Police Department, turned into a desire to challenge myself personally to ride my bicycle across the state.
That led me to the story of SHIELD616 that works in so many ways, including this amazing bicycle ride, to try and save the lives of heroes who rush to danger for a living. I felt that the work they do here in southern Colorado and across the country had to be shared.