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Thunderbirds Ride for MS

Thunderbirds Ride for MS photo 7/20/2007 1:06:30 p.m. - Hobbs, NM. New Mexico Junior College employees have teamed together with community bikers to form Team Thunderbird and ride in the 2007 Cactus & Crude MS 150 Bike Tour this weekend, July 21 & 22, for the sake of raising research funds to help end the devastating effects of Multiple Sclerosis.

President Steve McCleery, Vice President for Instruction John Gratton, Dean of Math & Sciences Kelly Holladay, and Professor of Geology Roene Neu are the NMJC employees on Team Thunderbird. Mike Bentley, Brett Blackmon, Scotty Holloman, Bob Reid, and Bill Shober round out the team, which has raised approximately $3,000 for the event.

"Bob Reid was the one who challenged several of us to get together and make a team for the ride, and we accepted. We made a goal to raise $1,000, and we've more than doubled that goal," explained Gratton and Holladay. Holladay further explained, "I've never done anything like this, so whatever I accomplish this weekend is more than what I dreamed of."

For Neu, like most of the other riders, "Not only is the ride a good cause, but it's a personal challenge to see if I can make it." According to McCleery, "Anytime you can meet a milestone challenge and dovetail it into a cause such as this, it's worthwhile."

Each participant will ride 150 miles in two days, 75 miles each day. Day One of the two-day ride will begin on Saturday in Midland, TX, and end early afternoon in Big Spring, TX. Day Two will take riders through the rolling hills of the Colorado River Valley, ending in Post, TX.

Every hour, someone in the U.S. is diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. In West Texas, over 1,000 people face the challenge of living with a disease that can rob them of significant physical and cognitive abilities.

For more information on the MS Bike Tour, visit

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