Who Was the Inspiration for Miles4Miles?
The parade-style race during this weekend's Birmingham Bike Festival benefits the Miles Levin Miracle Fund at Beaumont Children’s Hospital.
You can walk a mile in someone's shoes, or you can ride a half-mile to raise funds for kids in Nepal and Metro Detroit.
This weekend, as part of the second-annual Birmingham Bike Festival, Birmingham will be host to Miles4Miles, a parade-style family biking event benefiting the 2012 Miles Levin Miracle Fund at Beaumont Children's Hospital and the Miles Levin Nepal Foundation for Health and Education.
But just who was Miles Levin and why was he such an inspiration?
According to Beaumont surgical oncologist Richard Keidan, Levin was a Cranbrook student who passed away from a rare form of cancer shortly after graduating in 2007. Levin was a few days short of his 19th birthday.
"Miles was an inspiration to me in his fight against cancer," said Keidan in a press release. "I wanted to create a legacy in his honor. He wrote in his blog that 'dying is not what scares me. It's dying having had no impact.'"
Levin chronicled his journey on CarePages.com and readers can now purchase Keep Fighting, Stop Struggling: The Miles Levin Story at www.levinstory.com. The book, compiled from Levin's blog posts, includes commentary by Jon Levin and a forward by ABC journalist Bob Woodruff.
"He has told us what it means to live life without fear, but with joy," Woodruff writes of Levin.
"Through this event (Miles4Miles), Miles will have a positive impact on the lives of children on another continent and the lives of children here within our community," he added.
Hence the creation of the Miles Levin Nepal Foundation for Health and Education, a nonprofit that builds schools and toilet facilities while also working to improve access to education and health care for children in remote Himalayan villages. Keidan now spends three months a year working with the foundation in Nepal.
All the funds raised from Sunday's Miles4Miles will be split between the Miles Levin Nepal Fund and the Miles Levin Miracle Fund at Beaumont Children's Hospital. The local fund addresses the needs of children throughout Metro Detroit fighting cancer or other serious illnesses.
In addition, all money raised (up to $25,000) at Miles4Miles will be matched by the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals.
The Miles4Miles race takes place at 1:05 p.m. Sunday. For more information, including the race schedule and registration information, visit Need To Know: Birmingham Bike Festival Comes to Town.