From August 1st to October 24th, Israeli athlete Tom Peled will undertake a cancer fundraising effort called Bike for the Fight (BFF), cycling from Los Angeles to New York. BFF will raise money for the Israel Cancer Research Fund (ICRF), a North American organization founded in 1975 that gives grants to top Israeli cancer researchers located in leading scientific institutions across Israel.
During his ride, Peled plans to visit Jewish communities, summer camps, and major sporting events, telling people his personal story and encouraging others to join his cause by donating money or accompanying him on part of his trip. In addition to supporting cancer research, Peled hopes this trip will enable him to build bridges and strengthen the bonds between American and Israeli Jews.
This is an endeavor close to Peled’s heart; when his father died of cancer in 2011 at the age of 58, Peled channeled his grief into a 3000-mile long bike ride through Europe. By the end of his journey, this young, 24-year old Israeli realized he wanted to find a way to both honor his father and devote himself to fighting the insidious disease that robbed them of so many precious years together. The result was BFF.
Peled hopes to play an integral role in the continuation of this fight. He states, “My dream is that Bike for the Fight and efforts like it will someday help us overcome cancer so that other families do not have to suffer the premature loss of a loved one as my family did.”
The recipients of ICRF funds, which include Nobel Prize winners, have been engaged in ground-breaking research that has resulted in the development of life-saving achievements, such as early diagnostic devices and new drugs for leukemia, bone marrow cancer, breast and ovarian cancer, among others.