DAN CEARNS The Standard
SCUGOG: A motorcycle fundraiser to support the Worr family of Port Perry, will rumble through Scugog and beyond this Saturday, June 25.
There will also be a Teddy bear toy drive for patients at Sick Kids.
The Little Worr-iors Poker Run fundraiser is being put on by organizers Joe McLaughlin and Tanya and John Connolly, as well as by the Kawartha Charity Riders.
The event will begin at 9 a.m., at the Lakeside Restaurant in Caesarea, located at 4 Cedar Grove Dr., and riders will then go for a 240 km ride. There will be a silent auction and barbecue at the end site, at Terry Staples Memorial Park in Janetville.
Five year-old Olivia Worr is a cancer survivor. She was diagnosed with a tumor on her right ovary in May of 2014, and she is currently in remission. However, after one year of her being cancer free, her brother, two year-old Ryker Worr, was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer.
"When Olivia hit one year cancer free, we were getting Olivia ready for school. Ryker was running around with his sister, and wasn't looking where he was going, and bumped his head on the cupboards, and hit the back of his head when he fell," Peter Worr said. "When he got up he was acting a little dizzy and disoriented."
Ryker was brought to the hospital with, what the family thought was a concussion, but a CT scan revealed a two centimetre lesion on his cerebellum. A few weeks later, Ryker went for brain surgery and surgeons were only able to extract 85 per cent of the tumor.
From October until April, Ryker went through three rounds of regular chemotherapy, and another three rounds of a more intense chemotherapy involving a bone marrow transplant. The chemotherapy was only able to keep it stable, but did not shrink or remove the rest of the tumor. Beginning this month, Ryker has been going through an at home low dose maintenance chemotherapy. Mr. Worr said, because of Ryker's age, radiation treatment is out of the question.
Mr. Connolly said that they learned the Worr family's story from working with the parents.
"The reason it was brought to light is that we work with both parents, and the father switched jobs to get better benefits after Olivia's cancer, and the mother still works with us, but she hasn't been at work in two years," he said.
Mr. McLaughlin said, "this is what life is all about, doing what you love and helping people out."
"Much work has been put into this, and as stressful as it has been, we've got the easy part of the job, little Ryker's got the hard part," he said.
Tanya Connolly told The Standard that motorcycle riders are usually very successful at fundraising for good causes.
"Motorcycle riders are not the big bad people everyone sees them as. A lot of them have big hearts and raise a ton of money," she said.
The organizers also mentioned the Kawartha Charity Riders have been very helpful in connecting riders to the event.
Mr. Worr said it has been heartwarming for the family to see all the support they have received from the local communities.
"The support from the whole Township of Scugog and surrounding areas has just been phenomenal," he said."How total strangers, who have never met my family, can act like brothers and sisters, fathers and mothers and help people in need. It's overwhelming to see all the support."
Mr. Connolly said they hope to raise $10,000, but stressed that every dollar raised counts. Tickets are $20 each, and can be bought by calling Tanya Connolly at 705-340-0302, Joey McLaughlin at 705-928-0182 or any of the Kawartha Charity riders.
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