For the past few years, Springville city councilman, Michael Snelson has embarked on a journey that is both personal and community oriented. It is a literal journey that will take him thousands of miles to complete, while at the same time, a personal journey that he hopes will help thousands of children suffering every day.
This coming June, Snelson will begin the Great Cycle Challenge to raise money to fight kids’ cancer by way of the Children’s Cancer Research Fund. The funds raised will allow the research fund to continue its work to develop life-saving treatments and find a cure for childhood cancer.
Each year, the councilman said he has a specific child who he is riding in honor of, while at the same time, always riding in remembrance of his nephew, Jeff who he lost seven years ago to brain cancer.
“My nephew, Jeff, was diagnosed with brain cancer before leaving on a Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints mission,” Snelson said. “He had to put off going for about nine months while receiving treatments, and then came home early, passing away not long after. It was really hard on our whole family, and I’ve wanted to help other families like ours.”
In the Great Cycle Challenge, bikers have the entire month of June to complete their goal mileage and raise the amount of money each has set out to raise. This year, Snelson has made a goal of riding 500 miles and raising $1,000 — goals he knows are attainable.
“In 2017, I rode 777 miles and was the top Utah fundraiser with $2,700,” Snelson said. “Last year, I rode over 600 miles and was able to raise $1,600 toward cancer research.”
While the official mileage challenge has not begun, Snelson has already started raising funds, and is currently sitting as the top Utah fundraiser with just over $1,000 raised. And while Snelson knows he has already reached his financial goal, he hopes to raise even more.
“Cancer is the biggest killer of children from disease in the United States,” He wrote on his fundraising page. “Over 15,700 children are diagnosed every year, and sadly, 38 children die of cancer every week. Kids should be living life, not fighting for it.”
If you would like to donate to Michael Snelson’s efforts, go to greatcyclechallenge.com and search “Michael Snelson.”