Roseanne Adams and her bicycle are a common sight on the streets and paths of Moss Creek these days. She is preparing to celebrate her 70th birthday with a five-week, 2,500-mile trek along the banks of the Mississippi River to help raise money to buy care packages for deployed Marines.
Several days a week, Adams climbs on her bike and pedals 40 to 80 miles around the development. It's part of her training to build the stamina she'll need to bike from New Orleans to Itasca State Park outside of Minneapolis next month as part of a group led by a bicycle touring company.
An avid cyclist with other similarly lengthy tours under her belt, Adams said she initially signed up for the trip because she thought it would be an unconventional way to celebrate her 70th birthday.
The impending adventure recently took on new meaning, however, when she teamed up with the Moss Creek Marines, a local nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting active-duty Marines deployed to the front lines, mostly through its Operation Adopt a Combat Unit program.
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Adams and the Moss Creek Marines are attempting to secure local sponsorships for her ride, with all proceeds going to the long-running program, which assembles and ships care packages to units deployed to Afghanistan and other combat zones.
The cause is one close to her heart, Adams said.
"We will leave from New Orleans on May 3rd ... and that is where my son (Lt. Col. Michael Samples) is stationed with the 4th Marine Division," Adams said. "These kids just keep being sent back repeatedly and are doing everything they are asked to do, and I wanted to do this for them."
Roger Garreau, commanding officer of the Moss Creek Marines, said Adams will be a great ambassador for the organization and will help spread the word about its work.
"She's the Energizer bunny," Garreau said. "She is just a tiny little thing but has all this energy and is biking 30 to 50 miles a day. We're very excited for her and for this great program. The notes that we receive from these Marines would put a lump in your throat."
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