Vernon’s Peter Byrnes is riding in the Great Cycle Challenge to fight kids’ cancer. You may support him by visiting https://greatcyclechallenge.ca/Riders/PeterByrnes. (Photo Submitted)

Vernon’s Byrnes cycling for cancer

Vernon teacher issues triathon challenge

As an actor, Peter Byrnes has played a doctor in the Rocky Horror Show, a leper in Jesus Christ Superstar and Belle’s father in Beauty and The Beast.

Now, the 51-year-old Highland Elementary School Grade 5 teacher is dealing with real life trying to make a difference in finding a cure for cancer. Byrnes, a Vernon father of two sons, has been riding all month in the Great Cycle Challenge to fight kids’ cancer and will spin and swim in the annual Kal RATS Spring Triathlon Sunday morning at Kin Beach.

“A pop up on Facebook invited me to ride in support of conquering children’s cancer,” said Byrnes. “Having lost three close relatives in the last two years to cancer, I understood the pain, uncertainty and heartbreak associated with the disease. Children shouldn’t have to fight this disease. Childhood is for laughter, love and learning. There are so many great causes but I decided this is where I would make my stand.”

Byrnes, who moved to Vernon in 1993 from Australia, says the Great Cycle Challenge has raised more than $3 million already with 18,000 people covering a million kilometres to date.

“More than 1,400 children are diagnosed with cancer every year, and it’s the biggest killer of children from disease in Canada,” said Byrnes, who along with Armstrong buddy Mark Wehner, has qualified for the World Triathlon Championships this September in Brisbane. “Kids should be living life, not fighting for it. So I am raising funds through my challenge to help these kids and support SickKids Foundation to allow them to continue their work in developing treatments and finding a cure for childhood cancer.”

He is asking for support to give kids the brighter futures they deserve. Statistics show 27 children in Canada are diagnosed with cancer every week.

“Your support will change little lives. My goal is to ride 1,000 kilometres in June. I have ridden 698-k and raised $1,315 so far.”

To draw greater attention to the cause, Byrnes is throwing down a challenge. He will complete the 750-metre swim and 18.5-k cycle in the triathlon. A mountain bike crash has curtailed his running for a while, but his friend Ian McKechnie will be completing the five-k run. The triathlon starts Sunday at 8:30 a.m.

“My challenge is that my team, with a 51-year-old school teacher and a 37-year-old dairy farmer, will place top-10 out of 160 entries or I will donate $100 to the charity. If I do place top-10, I am asking challengers to donate $10 to the Great Cycle Challenge. Big thanks to Iron Heart Gym, Sun Country Cycle, Ruth at Professional Hands Massage Therapy and to all my friends and family for all their support and encouragement.”

People can donate money at https://greatcyclechallenge.ca/Riders/PeterByrnes


@VernonNews
sports@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Timeline offered for Lumby wastewater treatment project

Associated Environmental projects January 2019 completion

Small house fire extinguished by Vernon homeowner

Homeowner knocked down flames with hose before crews were on scene Tuesday morning

B.C. Wine Info Centre feeling the impact of striking casino workers

The casino isn’t the only Penticton business feeling the brunt of the strike action

UPDATE: Wildfire near Lake Country grows to seven hectares

The BC Wildfire Service is responding to a blaze near Dee Lake area, southwest of Coldstream.

Trudeau asks transport minister to tackle Greyhound’s western pullout

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he’s asked Transport Minister Marc Garneau to find solutions in Greyhound Canada’s absence.

Amazon’s hopes its Prime Day doesn’t go to the dogs

Shoppers clicking on many Prime Day links after the 3 p.m. ET launch in the U.S. got images of dogs

Alberta man drowns in Mara Lake near Sicamous

The 26-year-old man’s body was retrieved on July 16

Trudeau blasts Putin, Russia following Finland summit but stays mum on Trump

Strong words come one day after a controversial summit between Putin and Trump in Finland

Okanagan mixed martial arts athlete ready for battle

Xcessive Force Fighting Championship comes to the Penticton Trade and Convention Centre

Temperature records break across southern B.C. as heat continues

Whistler broke a 70-year-old record high of 32.2 C with a temperature of 32.9 C

Come dance between the lakes

Powwow Between the Lakes returns to Penticton Indian Band in August

Hawaii volcano boat tours continue after ‘lava bomb’ injuries

“An explosion occurred near the shoreline hurling hot lava rocks towards the boat and injuring several passengers.”

Trump returns from summit with Putin to forceful criticism

“Shameful,” ”disgraceful,” ”weak,” were a few of the comments. Makes the U.S. “look like a pushover,” said GOP Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee.

Most Read