LOS ANGELES – Hopping on a bike looks a little bit different for Damian Kevitt these days. He's been a cyclist all his life and is used to riding the L.A. streets. But in 2013, he was the victim of a hit and run that resulted in him losing his right leg.
“This was horrific. It is not something I would wish on my worst enemy,” said Kevitt.
He fought for his life for weeks in the hospital, never expecting to be back on his bike once again.
“The fact that I survived is truly miraculous. But I survived and I decided to take what happen to me and turn it into a movement for safer streets,” said Kevitt.
“I decided I wanted to finish the ride I started that day, but I wanted to do it for all people who are pedestrians, cyclists, kids, for anyone using the roads. What happened to be was a hit and run and they are very common especially in Los Angeles, so I wanted to end hit and runs,” said Kevitt.
But due to coronavirus, the 7th annual ride was canceled. Cyclists and runners would not able to gather and participate together to promote street safety as usual. So Kevitt decided to come up with a solution.
“We had to look at what to do and we decided to make it a virtual challenge. You can ride it, you can run it, on your own, but it’s a challenge,” said Kevitt.
Through the end of May, anyone from any age group or skill level can sign up to virtually finish the ride. You can even do it without leaving the house on a treadmill or stationary bike. The goal is to stay active, bring awareness, and raise money for SAFE, and other nonprofits struggling during this time.
“What we want everyone to do is to be outdoors, to stay active, to stay healthy, to stay physically distant and follow the public health orders so we are all healthy. But in a way we can all enjoy the outdoors. It’s good for your physical health its good for your mental health and for the nonprofits we are supporting,” said Kevitt.