Local

The Crystel Stanford Memorial Ride

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Valley bicyclists are coming together to honor Crystel Stanford. The 29 year old was severely injured in the Fresno Classic Century ride over the weekend. Tuesday, she was taken off life support and her family has donated her organs. Two different tributes are now planned in her memory that organizers hope will raise awareness of the sport and organ donation.

The death of Crystel Stanford during a 100-mile bike race through Fresno County last Saturday, has deeply touched the area's biking community.

Lance Crow said, "As I learned about her and saw stories on the news about the things she had done in her life, short life at that, I was just so interested in putting something together to honor her for what she had done."

Cyclist Lance Crow never met Crystel, but says he felt compelled to honor her memory. He decided the best way to do that was through the sport she loved. "I think it was important to create a ride that was only 30 or so miles, that riders of all abilities could attend, something flat where we could ride as a group and talk about biking in general."

He and other supporters sent out an invitation to the public on Facebook for the Crystel Stanford Memorial Ride. In just a couple of days close to 100 people have signed up for the ride, scheduled for this Saturday, May 28th.

Elisabeth Guevara said, "We want to make a difference, in Crystel's life and in anyone's life who chooses organ donation."

Guevara and her husband Tom, also avid riders, were moved when they heard of crystel's family's plan to donate her organs.

Tom said, "Thats what this team is about, organ donation... It's truly the gift of life."

On June 18th, Tom will compete in "Race Across America", a 3,000 mile, 12-state relay race across the United States. His team, called "Organ Recyclers" are part of Team Donate Life, a group that raises money to promote organ donation. If her family agrees, Tom wants to ride with Crystel's picture pinned to his jersey.

Elisabeth said, "I don't know if permission is the right word, but we do want them to know what we are doing, and I guess get their blessing also."

The Crystel Stanford Memorial Ride is Saturday, May 28th. It begins at 8am at Clovis East High School. This is a no-drop ride, meaning everyone rides together, no one is left behind.

Donate to Team Donate Life Local team "Organ Re-cyclers" http://www.teamdonatelife.com/supportateam.asp

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fresno, fresno county, local, graciela moreno
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