RIDE TO REMEMBER DONATION … Left to right, Kim Oxender, Pioneer Fire Chief Denny Fackler, and Kevin Oxender presents a check for $1500 to the Pioneer Fire Department. (PHOTO PROVIDED)
By: Lacie Fish
Without an organ donor, there is no story, no hope, no transplant. But when there is an organ donor, life springs from death, sorrow turns to hope, and a terrible loss becomes a gift.
Kevin and Kim Oxender know how vital organ donation is. Their son Kaleb passed away in an accident on June 24, 2013. He became the story and hope in an unfortunate situation.
Since then, Kevin and Kim have started a “Ride To Remember”, a memorial for Kaleb. This year the ride was on July 10 and had over 120 bikes participate. It began in Pioneer, then went through Montpelier on to Edon and then Blakeslee.
They then stopped at the Bryan Fire Department, went through Stryker, West Unity, and Alvordton. They stopped for photos at the Floral Grove Cemetary and then returned to pioneer. This year was the 8th year for Kaleb’s Ride.
There was a butterfly release, blood drive, silent auction, duck race, bicycle give-a-way, and ProEdge Bull Riding.
Because of all the amazing donations and wonderful people involved on this gorgeous day, the Oxenders were able to donate $1500 to the Pioneer Fire Department. The fire department was the first on the scene that morning.
Kevin stated, “The fire department has been part of this since we started the ride, and many of them were friends with Kaleb and went to school with him. Most were at the accident scene with him when he passed.”
The fire department has received a donation every year besides last year due to COVID. Please consider becoming an organ donor. Go to www.organdonor.gov to save a life.
Lacie can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org