First sergeant rides motorcycle to promote prostate cancer awareness

F. E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE, Wyo. -- A security forces member is scheduled to participate in Prostate Cancer Pony Express relay July 7 by travelling from Cheyenne to Jackson, Wyo., on his motorcycle.

Master Sgt. Gearold Crouse, 90th Missile Security Forces Squadron first sergeant, will carry with him on the trip a prostate cancer memorial journal containing the names of prostate cancer victims and current survivors and two flags, he said.

Motorcyclists will take the flags and journal to each state capital, passing them along to one another like members of the Pony Express would have. Each rider on the relay will sign one flag, and the governor of each state will sign the other, Crouse said.

Crouse said the local Harley Owners Group, chapter 3165, asked for a volunteer to carry the items on this leg of the journey, and he stepped up.

The previous rider on the journey rode from Lincoln, Neb., to Cheyenne to give Crouse the flags and journal, he said.

The relay is intended to raise awareness and encourage men to get tested because early detection increases chances to survive, said Dick Peterson, Prostate Cancer Pony Express ride coordinator.

"Last year almost 34,000 men died from prostate cancer," he said. "We believe that number could be significantly reduced with early detection. That's the reason we are riding.

"Early stage prostate cancer has no symptoms, so if you wait until you have symptoms it may be too late," he said.

Like many other governors, Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead is supporting the relay.

"Governor Mead is honored to support the volunteers who transport this flag and work on behalf of cancer research," said Renny MacKay, spokesman for Wyo. Gov. Matt Mead. "This project will help raise awareness and donations and hopefully lead to more men getting screened for prostate cancer."