NAPERVILLE, Ill. - The Brandon Marshall Foundation, Starved Rock Harley-Davidson and Linden Oaks at Edward are teaming up to increase awareness of mental illness and raise funds for mental health treatment with the Brandon Marshall Mental Health Awareness Ride May 31.
The event will begin at 8 a.m. at the Linden Oaks Outpatient Center in Naperville, with motorcycle registration and comments from Brandon Marshall, NFL Pro Bowl wide receiver with the Chicago Bears, and his wife Michi.
Brandon, Michi and the bikers will hit the road at 9 a.m. for a trip of more than 50 miles through Aurora, Oswego and Yorkville, ending at Starved Rock Harley-Davidson in Ottawa, where activities will include entertainment, a cookout, raffles and prizes.
The cost to have a motorcycle in the ride is $20 and includes lunch and a commemorative pin. All makes and models of bikes are welcome. Passenger registration is $10 and includes lunch. An adult non-rider ticket to the event at the dealership is $10 and includes lunch. You can register online.
The ride is a project of operations manager Erin Vandervelde, whose family owns the dealership.
"I have two family members who suffer from bipolar disorder," she said. "The challenges of dealing with a mental illness stretch throughout a family. When I noticed Brandon and Michi Marshall were talking about mental illness and sharing their story with the world in an attempt to remove the stigma associated with those suffering, I immediately wanted to help. A single donation request for a t-shirt has led to a friendship and partnership with The Brandon Marshall Foundation.
"My hope is that this ride not only raises money for The Brandon Marshall Foundation, but ultimately shines a bright and hopeful light on those suffering from mental illness, their friends and family."
Marshall and his wife co-founded nonprofit Brandon Marshall Foundation after he was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder in 2010. The organization’s mission is to end the stigma associated with mental illness, advocate for unprecedented awareness, connect those suffering to the resources they need and paint the world lime green (the official color for mental health awareness).
Posted by Holly Wagner