Fire chief rides for a cause

Te Anau Fire Brigade chief fire officer Graeme Moffat on his ride from the Homer Tunnel to Te Anau on Waitangi Day, as a fundraiser for the Leukaemia and Blood Cancer Foundation. Photo: Supplied

WHILE many were enjoying Waitangi Day commemorations on Sunday, Graeme Moffat, aka Possum, of Te Anau, made the decision to ride from Homer Tunnel to Te Anau, as a fundraiser for the Leukaemia and Blood Cancer Foundation.

He undertook the 120km ride from the Homer Tunnel on the Te Anau side of Milford Rd to finish outside the Southern Lakes Helicopters’ helipad on the Te Anau lakefront.

He anticipated his time to be 4-5.5 hours but he managed to do it in 4 hrs 10 mins, starting at 8.57am.

It was a solo effort with no support crew, and it was only the second time Moffat had attempted the distance.

“It was a perfect day for it. It was very chilly for the first 50kms and I had a head wind from Te Anau Downs home, which was a battle, and wore me down a lot.

“I enjoy that I can put my body on the line to support such a wonderful cause, and there will be more to come when I can dream up new ways to hurt myself, he said.

Moffat was originally to ride in the Milford Mountain Classic-New Zealand Alpine Road Cycle to be held on February 19. Due to Covid-19 red light restrictions, this has been cancelled and is scheduled again for February 18, 2023.

Moffat has been the Te Anau Fire Brigade chief fire officer for the past eight years and has set a personal challenge in the Firefighter Sky Tower Challenge. He will be racing up the Sky Tower in full firefighting kit to raise the vital funds and awareness again for Leukaemia & Blood Cancer New Zealand (LBC).

Te Anau Fire Brigade has also entered a team. Moffat has personally raised $1500 and the team has raised $2000.

“The event has been scheduled for May 28 but if it goes ahead or not under red light setting is yet to be seen,” he said.

“Every day eight children and adults in New Zealand are diagnosed with a blood cancer like leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma. LBC is the national charity dedicated to support
ing patients and their families, this support can last months or even years. LBC receives very little government funding, so please donate and help me support this great cause.’’

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