Paralyzed veteran continues to pedal forward to raise money for other valley war heroes

Posted at 4:44 PM, Sep 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-26 10:32:31-04
He cannot walk, but one injured veteran is finding a way to keep riding forward.
For Ryan Pinney, it was a bike that stole his ability to walk. But, the wheels are still spinning today—just in a different way.
On Sunday, Pinney and a dozen other came together to CYCLEBAR in Chandler to try and raise money for The Free Wheel Foundation and the Ride 430 Challenge, an organization focused on helping veterans. 
"I love riding for causes, you know, that's my main thing," Pinney explained. "Because the cause is what got me on the handcycle."
Pinney was in the Air Force and had just returned home from a deployment when he was riding a bicycle race in Las Vegas. During the ride, he flew over his handlebars in the accident that left him paralyzed from the waist down. 
"I'm working to get better on my own," Pinney said. "But now it's about giving back and trying to show others that even if you get hurt, injured, ill - we can still go out there and accomplish another goal."
The organization uses the funds for a variety of reasons, according to one of its founders, John Greenway. From helping build adaptive homes, to funding for specialized equipment, to just paying bills for a hero who needs it. 
"Every person in that room is bond by a common cause," Greenway said. "And that cause is that everybody there believes that we should take care of those who take care of us." 
And for Pinney, he hopes to pass along the support he has seen to the other heroes in our community. 
"When you see a family member or that service member realize that there's love coming from people that they've never even met before, the tears and the hope that washes over them is just simply amazing," Pinney said.
The organization has more events coming up in October and beyond. Click here for more information.