Assistant Managing Editor
LONGMEADOW This summer Tom Koenigs is going to take a 10-week bicycle trek in the of name Hopkins 4K for Cancer.
Koenigs, a 2004 Longmeadow High School graduate, will start the 4,000-mile ride from the John Hopkins University in Baltimore, Md., and end at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, Calif. -- stopping along the way to spread awareness and participate in community service.
The duel English and creative writing major said he is excited about the journey that begins in early May. The cause is close to Koenigs' heart.
"My dad is a cancer survivor. He had non-Hodgkin lymphoma. It didn't just affect his life [but others, too]," Koenigs said.
He said thanks to doctors, newly developed treatment techniques and people who cared enough to raise money for the research that developed the techniques that saved his life, his father beat the disease.
"It made me be a little more idealistic that money being raised has an impact," Koenigs said.
To train for the trip, Koenigs has been attending spinning classes and participating in mandatory three-hour bike rides twice a week.
Even though dedication and hard work are tremendous parts of the trek, every rider is still responsible for raising $4,000. As of press time, Koenigs had raised approximately $3,150, and he is hoping that members of his native town will help support his mission.
"There are two different ways to do it. One is an online donation. We have a group Web site, hopkins4k.org, and from there you you can pull down the specific riders and go to my specific page to make a donation," Koenigs said, adding that residents can also simply go to www.active.com/donate/hopkins4k/H4KTKoenig.
"The other way people can donate is by mailing a check made out to 'JHU Hopkins 4K for Cancer,'" Koenigs said.
If residents prefer the check payment method, checks can be mailed to Hopkins4K for Cancer, Attn: Tom Koenigs, Levering Hall, Suite 200, 3400 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21218.
The Hopkins 4K for Cancer is a completely student run, non-profit organization dedicated to uniting communities across the country in the fight against cancer. The ride has raised over $300,000 and has been recognized with several awards.