While I’m not sure he ever owned one himself, my grandfather bought every bike I owned as a child. He grew up in the Great Depression and had neither finances nor the time for a bicycle, but that didn’t stop him from wanting to ride.
He was one of those guys who exemplify the Greatest Generation. He had to leave school at age 12 to take over the family farm, then served in Europe during the Second World War. He took advantage of the opportunities military service provided including earning his high school equivalency.
Grandaddy was able to build a successful construction business and start a family. Grandaddy either lived next door or across the cotton patch all the years we shared on this Earth. I often rode the bike he gave me down a field road to get from my home to his.
We lost Grandaddy to Alzheimer’s in 2001. I started cycling a few years later. When Kyle Dortch shared about Pedal for Alzheimer’s in late 2022, I knew I had to be involved.
I’ve lost many other family members to Alzheimer’s, but my grandfather, Carl White, is the reason I ride. He comes to mind on lots of solo rides, especially passing a field road on the edge of a cotton patch.
Reagan Craig is a Pedal for Alzheimer’s Ambassador from Jackson Tennessee.