“It’s so moving to hear the national anthem as you stand among veterans getting ready for the ride.”
Rider Jeff Udell shares why he rides for our vets
(L-R) Team Udell: Aaron Whiteman, Spencer Alstodt, Nick Carrea, David Gary, Jeffrey Udell, John Curran, Adam Lewis, Marc Kalt
He especially loves the atmosphere of Ride Day mornings as riders stand side-by-side to pay tribute to veterans: “It’s so moving to hear the national anthem as you stand among veterans getting ready for the ride.”
Veterans and supporters stand together before the American flag, hands over their hearts, just moments before the riders take to the roads.
Some of our riders have been a part of The Ride for Our Vets from the very beginning!
In 2012, Jeff Udell was among the first riders to join The Ride when he rode the 100-mile bike route from Stamford to Essex with The Ride’s founder, Len Miller. Jeff has been riding every year since, both to serve CVLC’s mission and to honor the memory of his father, CVLC Co-Founder Howard Udell.
A practicing lawyer, Jeff has supported CVLC by volunteering his time to represent veterans in pro bono cases and by guiding the organization’s growth as a member of the CVLC Board of Directors.
Jeff strongly encourages friends and colleagues to join the Ride, bringing new riders to join “Team Udell” each year. He looks forward to embracing the challenge of the Ride this upcoming year.
When you take on the challenge of the Ride, you are making a small sacrifice yourself to improve the lives of veterans, who have already made a large sacrifice for all of us.
While some miles are more difficult than others, for Jeff the ultimate victory is greeting everyone at the finish line. “Finishing the Ride is the best part. You feel like you really accomplished something.” As well, said Jeff, “It’s great to see everyone and just unwind at the post-Ride BBQ.”
To be sure, the Ride is a challenging experience, but Jeff advises that the challenge is surmountable and worthwhile when you experience it as a team. He encourages people to ride together: “The Ride is most enjoyable and rewarding when you’re riding side by side with other people,” said Jeff.
The Ride is most enjoyable and rewarding when you’re riding side by side with other people.
Beyond riding with friends, Jeff also advises new riders to prepare for the Ride. As New England warms up in the Spring, Jeff suggests that riders get out on the road and train, increasing their distance each time they ride. He said new riders should gradually build up stamina to reach their ultimate mile goal.
Throughout the years, Jeff has also made valuable friendships at the Ride for Our Vets: a rewarding challenge fit for a worthy cause. When asked what was his most important message to would-be riders, Jeff said, “Most significantly, when you take on the challenge of the Ride, you are making a small sacrifice yourself to improve the lives of veterans, who have already made a large sacrifice for all of us.”
Contact Kharl if you have questions or if you want to tell us why you ride.