The Cedar Grove Baptist Church chapter of the Faith Riders congregated in the church parking lot Saturday morning for the first-ever “Ride for Lyla,” a promotional event to help the Koenig family with her medical bills. Fifty-eight motorcycles — some with multiple riders — registered for the event.
“It’s amazing to see this many bikes out,” said Mike Bowman, minister of music at Cedar Grove.
Rachel Koenig, Lyla’s mother, says her daughter has been in and out of the hospital for just over a year now with esophogeal problems.
“She’s ridden on more planes than we have,” she said. “We’ve been to see a specialist in New Orleans – she’s on an eight-week program and doing extremely well.”
Rachel and her husband, Chris, live in Birmingham, but she is a native of Leeds.
“I’m so grateful for everything our community has done,” Rachel said. “We’re hoping to keep up the trend, to help other families with kids who have problems that insurance doesn’t cover.”
The local Faith Riders chapter officially became existent in September. Their monthly event is “Thunder at the Grove,” which began in March and takes place the second Thursday of every month. “Thunder at the Grove” is a bike night, with free food and gospel music, from 6 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
Additionally, Director Ronny Burleson said the Faith Riders are willing to stage a benefit ride for any who are in need.
“Our doors are open to anybody that wants to do a benefit ride,” Burleson said. “If somebody wants to help a cause, our doors are open.
“That’s what it’s all about.”
Contact Will Heath at firstname.lastname@example.org.