Kelley Rose
Kelley Rose is preparing for a 300-mile Wish-A-Mile bike ride across Michigan to raise money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The Army spouse dedicates her time to helping others.

FORT BENNING, Ga. - Warning: Her giving spirit is contagious.

Kelley Rose will shave her head for cancer research and bike 300 miles to make a kid's dream come true.

No, she's not a saint, said Rose, wife of a medic with 4th Ranger Training Battalion and mother of three - she just wants to do her part to help others. "My children were all born healthy, never had a medical problem," Rose said. "I look around and see so many children who unfortunately aren't healthy, who have cancer, who say things like 'I just want the icky stuff to go away.'

"In the military, we aren't financially able to donate and help in the way others can but just by being involved a person can make a difference in someone's life."

Rose is training for a three-day, 300-mile Wish-A-Mile bike marathon July 22-25 in Michigan to raise money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Her goal is to raise $2,000 for the nonprofit organization that grants wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions.

Rose said watching her mother fight breast cancer into remission a few years ago inspired her. Soon after her mother's diagnosis, Rose gave up her brunette locks at a hair-shaving fundraiser for children's cancer research, she said.

"There were thousands of people there and within three hours we were all bald," Rose said. "The point of it was that we all left the same so the children who lost their hair to cancer felt normal again because we looked like them."

Rose is a staple at local walk and run events for causes ranging from breast cancer to Down syndrome awareness, said her friend and neighbor Kenia Kraus.

Despite a hectic schedule of children's activities and school events, Rose fits time in with her family readiness group, volunteering at church and mentoring wives new to Army life.

"I couldn't ask for a better neighbor," Kraus said.

Rose said she is looking forward to the bike marathon and hopes to reach her fundraising goal by July 1.

To donate, visit www.wishmich.org/kelleyrose.

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What does Wish-A-Mile do'
The Wish-A-Mile 300 Bicycle Tour is in its 23rd year of raising money to help the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan grant wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions.

This year, WAM wishes have been granted to a wheelchair-bound child with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a 5-year-old amputee and a 6-year-old with leukemia and Down syndrome among others.

To read their stories, visit www.wishmich.org.

Page last updated Thu April 29th, 2010 at 15:16