Tom Pelad, a 24-year-old Israeli student, along with a group of friends and supporters, is set to complete a 3,000-mile bike journey across America to raise money and awareness for cancer research in Israel.
Pelad’s journey, which began in August in Los Angeles and ending in New York, is part of a new organization he started called Bike for the Fight (BFF) in response to the death of his father, Ramy Peled, at age 58 from a rare form of cancer.
“Exactly one year ago, I started this process,” Peled told the Times of Israel. “I had no business background, no college degree, no money. I didn’t know with who, what, or when I would do this; I only had the why. I wanted to make something negative into a positive.”
Beginning with a small group of friends, Pelad’s concept took off after he was introduced to Eric Heffler, the executive director of Israel Cancer Research Fund (ICRF), a non-profit supporting cancer research in Israel. With ICRF’s help, Pelad has stopped at various locations and partners with local Jewish and non-Jewish organizations. He has also been promoting a positive message about Israel.
“I’m supporting something that makes Israel so special: technology, science, research,” Pelad said.
So far, Pelad has raised $80,000 and expects to receive $100,000 by the end of his ride.