I am a retired New York State Correction Officer. I am honored and privileged to participate in the 2019 Tour de Force Memorial Ride. In 2007 my family became friends with a very special family who had lost a husband/father on September 11, 2001. Through this family we experienced how much families have suffered from that tragic day. Our cause may not ease the pain and emptiness but will help the families left behind who are in need. The 2019 TDF Memorial Ride will be my fifth ride. Lisa, my wife, will also be participating in this event as part of the support team. This is her fifth year volunteering with the support team.
The Tour de Force was founded in 2002 as a memorial bicycle ride to honor the victims of 9/11. Nine participants, with the assistance of a four man support team, cycled from the Pentagon to Ground Zero. They completed the ride in four days, riding to the finish through the somber first anniversary gathering at Ground Zero, greeted by cheers and the handshake of former Mayor, Ed Koch.
It has evolved into a four day, 275 mile ride, in which 250 riders and over 40 support team members participate to raise funds for the families of law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty. Each and every participant, support team member and staff, raise funds and put in a lot of work throughout the year to make this event a huge success. The 2019 Tour de Force's 9/11 Memorial Ride will depart from Yankee Stadium in New York and end at Fenway Park in Boston.
Each and every rider participates in raising funds to support what we all believe is a wonderful and very worthwhile endeavor. It is the belief in our mission that brings so many participants back year after year. The Tour de Force is a registered 501(c)3 charity with the IRS.