As Mike Groh speaks, Dustin Wright checks the front wheel of his bicycle, then glances toward the sun and continues to listen.
"People do recover from addiction and it happens every day - in churches, in jobs, and at home," Groh said, social worker/drug abuse counselor at the Iowa Veterans Home. "It takes support from family and others who say, 'I know you can do this,' and that's what today is - a celebration."
Wright nodded in agreement - entering his fourth year of recovery from drug and alcohol addiction.
T-R PHOTO BY TAMMY R. LAWSON
Listening to remarks and getting ready to roll, Marshalltown’s Dustin Wright knows of what is spoken before the start of Riverview Park’s 3rd Annual Ride For Recovery.
"I'm riding for recovering addicts," he said, "because I've been there."
While rain let the air out of its original Sept. 19 date, cyclists were pumped back up beneath a bright, Sunday sky as several pedaled their support for those battling such vices.
The Substance Abuse Treatment Unit of Central Iowa, Horizons Family Service Alliance and IVH were host to the 3rd Annual Ride For Recovery - an event which commends people who have dealt with addictive circumstances.
And for Horizons' Supervisor Angie Eich, the day was one of symbolism for everyone - families, friends and relatives who also participated.
"This is awareness and encouragement for those who want to have a sober lifestyle," she said. "It's great day."
Sporting new tee-shirts and water bottles, cyclists took the 10-mile trek from Riverview Park to MEGA-10 Park, and back.
Nearly 22.6 million people in the U.S. suffer from 'using' disorders, and for Wright, the ride was something he believes in wholeheartedly, saying everyone deserves a chance.
"I hope this brings more attention to the program because money donated goes to the groups that need it so they can further carry the message to an addict who still suffers," he said. "That's why I'm here. I have faith in this."
SATUCI provides outpatient treatment, prevention, and education services to the citizens of Marshall, Tama, Poweshiek, and Hardin Counties. For more information, call 641-752-5421.
Concerning individuals or families needing addiction advice and treatment information, call the 24-hour Nationwide Addiction Assistance Helpline at 1-800-559-9503.
Contact Tammy R. Lawson at 641-753-6611 or firstname.lastname@example.org