HAMBURG, N.Y. (WIVB) — A crowd of friends, family, and colleagues sent Darwin Ost off on his 2,400-mile journey across the country for JDRF, Monday morning.
Ost left from the Buffalo Ford Stamping Plant, where he works as the UAW health and safety representative. He’s been with the company for the past 27 years and says its’ always been a supporter of the foundation.
He will be stopping at seven Ford plants across the United States, riding an average of 70 miles per day.
His first leg of the journey is 100 miles to Erie, Pennsylvania, today. He will be riding 7-8 hours a day and plans to wrap up the trip by September 1st.
Ost has already raised $12,000 and is selling raffle tickets and each campsite to keep the donations coming in. He’ll be selling raffle tickets for a shot to win a cornhole set, complete with Bills and Sabres’ bean bags.
He says JDRF has a special place in his heart and he’ll do anything he can to raise awareness.
“My friend’s dad had Diabetes and ended up losing part of his foot because of it,” said Ost. “Then one of my great friends and coworkers here has it and has to wear a monitor every day, give himself shots… so it’s important,” he said.
And while making this ride is an impressive undertaking, Ost remains humble.
“Anybody can do this. This isn’t something spectacular,” he said. “This is just a normal guy doing what he loves to try to make the world a better place.”
Ost’s goal is to raise $50,000 toward finding a cure. If you want to donate directly through him, head here.
Gabrielle Mediak is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.