Area bikers ride to raise money for children

Local News

BLAIR COUNTY, Pa (WTAJ)- Burgi’s Low Life Riders have passions for bikes and kids. The non-profit organization held its 18th annual charity bike ride Sunday at Roundhouse Harley Davidson in Duncansville.

The organization raises money every year to help Blair County children with serious medical conditions get the help they need. Through the 18 years, the group has raised $440,000 for the children.

Each year they selected children to be highlighted during the bike ride. Secretary and Treasurer of Burgi’s Low Life Riders say that the children receive the money raised from the year.

“We did choose them,” Russo said. “We have nurses on our committee, and the nurses go and interview talk about the children’s medical needs and things like that. That’s generally what we raise the money for.”

Adam Criste and Daxton Walters were the two children highlighted for this year’s ride. Adam is two and is diagnosed with Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia, which is a form of chronic lung disease. Adam was born three months premature and now has a tract to help with his development. He also had two brain leaks and is blind in one eye.

Daxton is 14 months and is diagnosed with failure to thrive, which is when a child’s weight or rate of weight gain is slower than other children their age. He has a G-tube placement.

This was the first year both families have attended the ride event and were overwhelmed by the amount of support they received from the community.

“It’s overwhelming. Like I said, it’s amazing to see people come together in a community just to help a child,” Adam parent’s Jodi Besiwenger and Matthew Criste, said. “Total strangers coming out to help a child that’s in need. It’s amazing to see.”

“It’s unreal,” Daxton’s father Tristian Walters said. “We appreciate everything. Between all the trips to Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, it’s hard trying to find babysitters for the other two. We just appreciate everything.”

Nearly 200 bikers rode their bikes 112 miles across the region. They made stops in Johnstown and Colver before ending their ride at the Brush Mountain Sportsmen Facility in Altoona.

An after-party was held at the Sportsmen Facility. The families were greeted by a band, food, and even more support from the community.

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