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Tour Des Chutes gives biggest gift yet for cancer surviors

Published On: Oct 09 2012 05:41:58 PM CDT   Updated On: Oct 09 2012 07:47:54 PM CDT

Tour Des Chutes founder Gary Bonacker to hand a $75,000 check to the St. Charles Cancer Center's cancer survivorship program. NewsChannel 21's Kandra Kent spoke to Bonacker about what the gift means to him.

BEND, Ore. -

The founder of the Tour Des Chutes ride gave a huge gift on Tuesday evening.

Gary Bonacker -- a cancer survivor himself -- presented St. Charles Cancer Center's survivorship program with a $75,000 check.

It's money raised from his annual Tour Des Chutes bike ride. Bonacker founded the event as a way to support other cancer survivors in Central Oregon.

Bonacker said the ride has raised more money each year since it began in 2005.

And this year is no exception.

Bonacker says he's thrilled to support the various programs St. Charles offers for cancer survivors.

"I mean it feels good," he said.  "And it feels right. It feels like, you know, if we could give a $175,000, I'd do that. And you know, our goal is to always give that program as much as we can."

Bonacker missed this year's ride back in July after a relapse of the disease just days before the event.

The Tour Des Chutes is also giving $20,000 to Lance Armstrong's Livestrong Foundation and $5,000 to help Bend Dr. Michael Mara train other physicians in Kenya.


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