Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Injured veterans ride through New Jersey

With every mile that goes by as they ride from Hasbrouck Heights through Watchung and Princeton and on to Pennsylvania, 200 injured veterans will be a little closer to recovery.

From September 27 – October 3, these brave riders will be participating in the UnitedHealthcare Army/Navy Challenge, a 460-mile journey through New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland. The UnitedHealthcare Army/Navy Challenge is one of six cycling challenges UnitedHealthcare is sponsoring this year nationwide with nonprofit organization Ride 2 Recovery.

Ride 2 Recovery is a groundbreaking program that uses the physical and mental challenge of long-distance cycling to help improve veterans’ physical health and psychological wellness. The program helps veterans find bicycles that fit their physical needs – including traditional bikes, recumbent bikes, hand cycles, tandems or custom modified cycles – to build up strength and endurance, culminating in the long challenge rides. Veterans who participate in the program report that the rides give them a renewed sense of purpose, hope and camaraderie.
Students from Valley View School greeted veterans enthusiastically as they rolled into Watchung
The Army/Navy Challenge will begin on September 27 with a round-trip ride from Hasbrouck Heights, NJ through New York City, with a stop at the 9/11 Memorial in Manhattan. The following day, riders will depart Hasbrouck Heights for Princeton, NJ, stopping along the way at Valley View School in Watchung. On September 29, the veterans will leave Princeton to continue their journey into Pennsylvania and Delaware before ending the trip in Annapolis, Maryland. On October 3, the veterans will enjoy the Navy vs. Air Force football game at the United States Naval Academy.
On September 29, Ride 2 Recovery celebrated Women's Day to honor the women who have served in the military
At each stop along the way, UnitedHealthcare helped to organize volunteers to welcome the veterans, serve food and water or unload equipment. Now in our sixth year of serving as the presenting sponsor for the race, it is a pleasure each year to see our employees join together to help our veterans in their efforts to rebuild physical and mental strength. It’s likewise a wonderful opportunity to see many other community members and organizations come out to join us in a united sense of appreciation for the sacrifices these veterans have made during the course of their service.
UnitedHealthcare volunteers, USO employees and I greeted riders with lunch as they cycled into Watchung, NJ on September 28
We hope many of you will join us along the road in New Jersey to cheer on our veterans!