A former truck driver is taking a 10,000-mile motorcycle ride around the U.S. to raise funds and awareness of multiple sclerosis.
Shawn Kitchen, an endurance motorcyclist and former truck driver, will attempt to ride more than 10,000 miles in a lap around the continental U.S. in a 16-day period this month.
Transflo, provider of a mobile and cloud-based platform that drives connectivity, automation, and supply chain liquidity, has joined the annual MS 5000 fundraiser as the co-title sponsor with Geotab of Kitchen. Proceeds of MS 5000 benefit MS Views and News, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing information and resources to those who’ve been diagnosed with the degenerative neurological disorder.
“Transflo is proud to sponsor Shawn’s attempt to visit the four corners of the United States as part of his fundraising ride for MS,” said Don Mitchell, Director of Marketing for Transflo. “MS Views and News provides direct service and support for those who have been diagnosed with MS, with a special emphasis on those in rural parts of the country. We wish Shawn a safe, fun, and successful journey. Likewise, in honor of Driver Appreciation Week, we’d like to express our sincere and deep gratitude for the truckers that keep our society moving by offering a free version of Transflo Mobile+ and making our suite of tools available to every driver and owner-operator on the continent.”
Kitchen, with his 2016 Honda Goldwing, won the competition last year, earning the most points and raising the most money. Transflo’s title sponsorship, in conjunction with Geotab, of Kitchen’s 2021 ride will fund expenses like fuel and lodging for Kitchen’s 16-day trip, and individual donations raised by Kitchen will be given directly to MS 5000. Kitchen drove a truck professionally for 16 years, operating across various segments — long-haul and regional dry van, tanker, flatbed, and local pickup and delivery.
He then transitioned to various other roles, including driver trainer, recruiter, and safety manager, at multiple fleets. He’s now director of operations at a startup called True Load Time, which aims to document and reduce time drivers spend detained at shipper and receiver facilities.
“I owe a huge amount of thanks to Transflo and Geotab,” said Kitchen. “Without their involvement, I wouldn’t even be able to attempt this endurance ride and the fundraising opportunity it presents for MS 5000 and MS Views and News. The older I get, the more I’ve come to realize that our lives are best lived in service of other people. Riding my motorcycle reached a new level of enjoyment when I started doing it to benefit others.”
MS 5000 is a fundraiser organized each year by Paul Pelland, an endurance motorcyclist who was diagnosed with MS in 2003 and has since been trying to ride 1 million miles on his motorcycle to raise awareness and funds for MS support. As part of the fundraiser, riders individually compete for and earn points by driving long distances on their bikes raising donations between Sept. 1 and Oct. 20.