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Bicyclists pedal from Houston to Austin for 33rd annual BP MS 150

HOUSTON – The BP MS 150 bike riders, riding for research, have rolled out.

The trip will take two days to get from Houston to La Grange and then eventually to Austin as a part of the world's largest multiple sclerosis fundraiser.

"Day two is definitely the toughest part," said participant Rudy Mendez.

This will be Mendez's sixth year doing the 150. In 2012, he started riding for his best friend who has MS and from there, his campaign took off.

"We grew our team this past year to about 130 riders, 30 living with MS, raising about $170,000," said Mendez.

Rudy and 9,000 bikers are all making the journey to Austin for people like Helen Palmer, diagnosed in 2004.

"It's easy for me to come out and support two days for them to raise the money and do the ride for the research," Palmer said.

Since the BP MS 150 began 33 years ago, it has raised $240 million. This year, the National MS Society hopes to surpass the $250 million mark.

"I knew we had to finish this ride for her," said Michael Guillory, riding for his wife.

At the end of March, Kerry Guillory was hit and killed along with another cyclist in a Waller County charity event.
She was preparing to ride in the BP MS 150, and today, Michael said she still is with her ashes strapped to the back of his bike.

"We're riding together, like we already had planned," Guillory said.

Also in attendance was the deputy who first responded to the scene in Waller County. Her name is Cheryl Hillegeist, and she was there the moment Kerry died.

"It's just heartwarming for me and it shows a very good connection and a very strong family bond," Hillegeist said.