The cycle challenge is complete
Team at final destination
A trans-Atlantic cycle challenge to mark the 30th anniversary of the Lockerbie bombing has raised almost £12,000 so far.
Brian Asher, Colin Dorrance, Paul Rae, David Walpole and David Whalley – representing the emergency services and Lockerbie Academy – completed their mission at the weekend.
Over recent months they have covered the 3,328 miles from Lockerbie to New York which the passengers never got the chance to complete because of the atrocity which claimed 270 lives.
The epic cycle is also raising money for the Dumfries youth mental health charity Soul Soup, to employ a worker in Lockerbie Academy.
And it has given families of those who died the chance to meet some of the people who helped in the aftermath of the bombing – many talking about the events for the first time.
The cyclists’ 672-mile journey from the Lockerbie memorial cairn in Arlington National Cemetery, near Washington, was to Syracuse University which lost 35 students in the disaster.
On Friday they represented the town at a service where a bell was rung for all those who perished and roses laid for each one.
They handed over a shepherd’s crook, crafted from wood found in the The cyclists at the Lockerbie memorial cairn in Arlington National Cemetery
Tundergarth area where Pan Am Flight 103’s nose cone crashed when the plane was blown out of the skies on December 21, 1988.
A book of commemoration was also presented to the chancellor and president of the university as gifts from the town, marking the strong links forged between the two.
The challenge also marked the end of an era for cycle team leader Colin Dorrance who, at 18, was Scotland’s youngest police officer at the time of the disaster.
He has now retired but the Chief Constable gave him special dispensation to wear his uniform one last time at Syracuse. He has now donated his uniform and medals to the Pan Am 103
archive at Syracuse.
The cycling team said: “Through the event, people have talked about their memories and their feelings. For some, they have done so for the first time in 30 years.
“It has been humbling to receive not just messages of goodwill but also the accounts of how people struggled in the aftermath and recoiled at the injustice of what happened.
“For others, it’s not yet time to talk and there are those who have made a pact with themselves to live as peacefully as they can with the past and to focus on a better future.”
People can still donate at: https://www.justgiving. com/fundraising/cycle-toSyracuse. Retired sergeant Colin Dorrance with the Syracuse University mascot
We did it