9/25/2012 2:25:00 PM Byron youth aims to collect 1,000 bikes for Haiti
By David Richards
He's a busy kid for a fifth grader. He plays football, has his own lawn-mowing business, is active in scouting and rode 110 miles on his 12-speed bike earlier this month for a friend and for a country.
Isaiah Crossfield of Byron rode in the Jesse James bike ride in early September that begins in Northfield and goes through Faribault. His reason was simple: To raise awareness for the fundraising effort he created to send bikes to youth in Haiti. He also had one other goal, to raise funds for his friend, a fellow middle school student who was recently struck by lightning.
"I saw kids from Haiti on TV, and I felt really bad," Crossfield said. "Kids were stuck under buildings."
It was in 2010, when a 7.0 magnitude earthquake rocked Haiti, where having a bike is a luxury.
"A bicycle in Haiti is the equivalent to having a car here," said Dwight Crossfield, Isaiah's father.
Isaiah Crossfield has been riding long distances for years. He rode 20 miles in a day when he was 7 and rode 50 miles last fall.
The more he rides, the more he hopes to raise through his Web site, http://isaiahbikesforhaiti.com.
His first bike drive will be on Oct. 6 at the Byron United Methodist Church from 8 to 5 p.m. Bikes in all conditions will be accepted and will then be shipped to a distribution center in Illinois that fixes bikes. Dwight Crossfield said he expects all of the bikes to taken down to the center in Late November or early December and then to be ready for shipping to Haiti in early spring.
"Our goal right now is to collect 1,000 bikes," he said.
"Or more," Isaiah Crossfield added.
Other bike drives will be planned for other neighboring cities as well.
Donations received from the Web site will go toward shipping costs, although Dwight Crossfield said they are still reviewing on the options to ship the bikes to Haiti.
In addition to helping youth in Haiti, Isaiah Crossfield hopes to raise $500 to help with the medical costs of the Byron student who was struck by lightning. A direct link to that student's Web site will be appearing on Isaiah's site soon.
Isaiah takes his fundraising effort in stride, even though the 110-mile ride was a challenge.
Read the rest of the story in the print edition of the Byron Review.