SPANISH FORT, Ala. (WKRG) — It was 400 miles from Memphis and the front steps of St. Jude but it was so loud they may have heard it anyway.
On the Alabama Gulf Coast, a massive sea of bikers rode to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Saturday.
Even though the hospital is hundreds of miles away, Bill Black from radio station 95 KSJ says this is a local cause, “right now there are about children from Mobile and Baldwin Counties being treated at St. Jude.”
One of those Alabama kids who got life-saving treatment in Memphis is Chris Dillon. He beat his cancer at St. Jude and now rides for another kid fighting the disease, “This year I’m riding for a kid named Kaige from Frisco City who’s in the fight of his life. We’re just out here as part of the community of people who like to ride and give back to the community.” It’s his second year at the ride and this year brought a team of about 20 bikers with him.
There were so many bikes it took a full six minutes for them all to roll out of the Eastern Shore Center in Spanish Fort. Here’s video of the full rollout:
The Kruise for St. Jude, put on by radio station 95 KSJ, is in its 18th year. This year they got country music star Brandon Lay to lead the ride. He’ll also be playing his new single, “Still Rock n’ Roll” at the after-party at Flor-Abama on the beach. When KSJ found out he was a biker, it was a perfect fit. And Lay happens to be from Jackson, Tennessee, just down the road from St. Jude, “we heard a lot about St. Jude growing up and unfortunately, but also fortunately several of the kids from our church were in and out of St. Jude.”
Lay led the police-escorted ride on a custom vintage Harley that was donated and was given away in a raffle to raise money for St. Jude too.
By the way, if you’ve ever visited the hospital gift shop, it was 100-percent funded by donations from lower Alabama.
The ride may be over but the fight is not. If you’d like to donate to St. Jude just click here.
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Chris Best is the News Director for WKRG. He’s a husband and father of four. He’s also a motorcycle enthusiast.