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Stunt motorcyclist will bring message of hope for community battling opioid crisis

Provided photo: Scott Caraboolad and a team of Ride4Life stunt riders will perform in Orleans County from Thursday through Saturday.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 3 October 2017 at 12:37 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers: Don Snyder, a chaplain with the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office, says the opioid crisis “is taking our people from us.”

Internationally renowned stunt motorcycle rider Scott Caraboolad and the Ride4Life stunt riders will be in Orleans County from Thursday through Saturday, performing at three school districts, and three other shows in the community.

Caraboolad, a recovering drug addict, will share a message about making healthy choices. His three-day visit is supported by a group of churches and pastors in Orleans County.

Caraboolad will share how he is stayed away from drugs and found new purpose in his life. He credits God for giving him mentors and the strength to making better choices to break away from the addiction.

A group of Orleans County churches and PACT (Pastors Aligned for Community Transformation) said Caraboolad will bring a hopeful message to a community that is battling an opioid addiction devastation.

“We want to be part of the solution,” the Rev. Tim Lindsay, told the Orleans County Legislature last week.

Lindsay is pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Albion and also is the chaplain of the county jail. He said the jail chaplain experience has showed him the impact of the opioid addiction, with many people committing burglaries, larcenies and other crimes to fuel their addiction.

The motorcycle events will include representatives from agencies that work with people with addictions. Lindsay sad the events will help connect the community to services at GCASA and other organizations.

The Rev. Tim Lindsay, right, outlines three-day visit this week by stunt motorcycle riders. He is joined by Sheriff Randy Bower and Wayne Litchfield, one of the volunteers for the upcoming event.

Caraboolad is an inspiring speaker, who shares a powerful story, Lindsay said.

“The motorcycle is the draw,” Lindsay told county legislators. “But his life was really in the pits and it’s really turned around.”

Sheriff Randy Bower is a strong supporter of Caraboolad and the Ride4Life team. Bower approves of Caraboolad’s message of finding a mentor and true purpose.

“When in doubt, reach out,” Bower said about people struggling with addictions or despair.

Don Snyder, a retired chaplain in the state prison system, is now a volunteer chaplain with the Sheriff’s Office. He said the opioid addiction is claiming many lives in the county.

“This is not a problem we can continue to ignore,” Snyder said at the Legislature meeting. “This is taking our people from us. It’s taking parents from children.”

Caraboolad and Ride4Life will do its first show at Lyndonville Schools on Housel Avenue on Thursday at 8:30 a.m. It will be at Holley School District on Friday at 8:30 a.m. and Kendall school on Friday at 1 p.m.

“He’s not just a guy with a motorcycle and a fancy story,” Snyder said. “He’s a genuine person whose life has been changed.”

Ride4Life will do community events on Thursday in Medina at 6 p.m. at the Canal Basin and then in Albion on Friday at 6 p.m. on East State Street with the street blocked off between Platt and Main.

The biggest event will be “Hopefest” on Saturday from noon to 6 p.m. at the Orleans County 4-H Fairgrounds in Knowlesville.

The stunt team will give three shows on Saturday.  The first at 1 p.m., followed by a show at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. Food will be available to purchase throughout the day and there will be music.

Community Partners include: P.A.C.T., Orleans County Sheriff’s C.A.R.E., Orleans United DFC, Suicide Prevention Coalition of Orleans County, Genesee-Orleans Opioid Task Force, GCASA, MAAC, MHA of Genesee and Orleans, Care & Crisis Helpline, Independent Living of the Genesee Region, CareNet and other agencies and organizations that will have displays and resources available throughout the event. Admission is free to all ages.

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