Grimshaw resident’s cross-Canada cycling tour raises money for muscular dystrophy

Kelly Bunn at Nampa, shortly after setting out from Grimshaw en route for St. John’s Newfoundland.

Tom Henihan
Express Staff

Kelly Bunn began a cross-Canada cycling tour in Grimshaw on May 8, with an anticipated arrival in St. John’s Newfoundland on August 15.

Bunn had already completed a biking trip from Alberta to Vancouver B.C. with his two sons in 2015, and considers this current trek as a continuation of the Alberta/B.C. ride with the eastbound leg of the journey completing a cross-Canada tour.

Having a nephew who is contending with muscular dystrophy, Bunn is using the trip to raise money for Muscular Dystrophy Canada.

He says he had been thinking recently about his cycling trip to Vancouver with his sons and thought that he should ride to the east coast as a fundraiser.

Realizing that people with muscular dystrophy do not have the option to ride across Canada, he figured having that option he would while also raising money to advance the treatment of the debilitating illness.

Bunn says he is riding on behalf of everyone who suffers from the muscular dystrophy and that he is doing it “Because I Can. They are my motivation and I will think of all of them every day of this journey.”

He posts on Facebook regularly, documenting the trials and triumphs of biking across the country, the accounts often rendered as humorous anecdotes.

Portion of one such entry while in northern Ontario June 10 reads:

“Dashed out of Dryden, whipped through Wabagoon, dangled past Dinorec, rumbled past Raleigh, burned through Butler and then inched into Ignace. Once again all of the local knowledge was asked for, received… and wrong! None of the promised convenience stores were open but today it didn’t matter. I was well stocked after my Dryden shopping trip so was fully prepared for the long, hilly ride ahead… “

Further in the same post:

“Today is actually how I anticipated my entire trip would go. A decent start in the morning, a short mid-day break to stretch and arrival at destination by mid- afternoon. Set up camp, have a shower and then a few hours to do my updates, have supper and do a little relaxing before the next day’s ride.

“This has been one of the very few days that have gone that way and now it leaves me feeling kind of guilty. Over the first month of this trip, I have conditioned myself for longer riding times and a constant scramble to do what needed to be done before it was time to get to sleep. Not sure what will happen going forward, but even though I had hoped to average 100kms/day, and I did that, it feels like I only put in half a day…”

Along with his camping equipment, food and other items to cover contingencies that may arise along the highway, Bunn also carries a Canadian Flag, which he asks people he encounters along the way to sign.

With a goal of raising $7,500 Bunn had already raised $4,530 by June 12, with an estimated two months to go before he arrives in St. John’s NL.

To keep up-to-date on what he calls “Tour du Bunn 2019” you can follow him on Facebook and those wishing to donate money to the Muscular Dystrophy fundraiser can visit https://muscle.akaraisin.com/ui/2019tourdebunn

Women at a store in Wadena Saskatchewan signing the “Tour de Bunn” Canadian Flag.

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