Bicyclist receives award for Pan Ohio Hope Ride, another available for UT student

July 11, 2012 | News, UToday
By Staff

Ben Spang, a Toledo resident attending Pomona-Pitzer College in Claremont, Calif., recently received the 2012 Pan Ohio Hope Ride Young Rider Scholarship award.

Ben Spang, third from left, received the 2012 Pan Ohio Hope Ride Young Rider Scholarship from Dr. Stephen Roberts, far left, Mike Vanderhorst and Anne Creech.

Pan Ohio Hope Ride is an event that supports the American Cancer Society and its mission to create more birthdays. It is a four-day ride that is 328 miles long. The riders cycle from Cleveland to Cincinnati and along the way stop at two lodges.

The Young Rider Scholarship will provide the registration fee for Spang to bike in memory of Fritz Walker, who recently lost his battle against cancer.

“Fritz was an avid bike rider so it is suiting that in his memory this scholarship was presented,” said Walker’s sister, Anne Creech, who has worked on behalf of the American Cancer Society to further its mission for a cure.

Creech is a three-time cancer survivor who has spoken of her fight against cancer at the Statehouse, the White House and to cancer patients.

Spang received the 2012 Pan Ohio Hope Ride Young Rider Scholarship at UT Medical Center from Dr. Stephen Roberts, coordinator for the health promotion and education major in the Master of Public Health Program in the Department of Health and Recreation Professions.

There is an additional Pan Ohio Hope Ride Scholarship to award to a first-time rider UT student who is willing to complete four days from Cleveland to Cincinnati. The recipient will raise funds to help fight against cancer. The second scholarship will be given in memory of Judy (Kirker) Accettola, a 1981 law alumna of the UT College of Law, who also gave her time in an effort to find a cure for cancer.

Students interested in riding the Pan Ohio Thursday through Sunday, July 26-29, who would like to apply for the second award should contact UT alumnus Mike Vanderhorst at The applicant should indicate why he or she would like to ride and how he or she would raise funds for the fight for a cure.

Vanderhorst is the coordinator for the scholarship funds. He hopes that there will be enough interest in northwest Ohio to start a leg of the Pan Ohio Hope Ride at UT.

For more information about the Pan Ohio Hope Ride, visit

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