Diabetes Awareness rider tools through Crestview

biker florida diabetes ride

John Rhodes prepares to get underway after stopping at the Crestview Wal-Mart during his diabetes awareness cycling tour of the Panhandle.

BRIAN HUGHES / News Bulletin
Published: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 at 08:40 PM.

CRESTVIEW — By all rights, John Rhodes shouldn't be bicycling around Florida. In fact, if his doctor had been right, he wouldn't even have been alive to visit Crestview.

To follow along on John's ride, visit his Google+  page: https://plus.google.com/117322044595025637984/posts>>

After riding almost 92 miles from Quincy Sunday, the 53-year-old Gainesville resident tooled into town Monday on a 2,900-mile statewide bicycling tour to raise awareness of diabetes.

After beating Type 2 diabetes himself, having had several mini-strokes, having "a blown left knee and a partially blown right knee," beating a diagnosed terminal melanoma, and being hit by a drunken driver, Rhodes has faced more than his share of challenges.

Diagnosed in 1998 with melanoma, a form of skin cancer, he decided to walk west from Gainesville to sort life out. When he reached New Orleans, he decided to keep going, winding up, still on foot, in Seattle.

"I thought I was going to die," Rhodes said. "Obviously I'm still alive."

Wheelchair bound

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