SANDPOINT — It was a big year for the Rotary Club of Sandpoint’s CHAFE 150 Gran Fondo on June 15, with more than 500 cyclists riding routes ranging from 30 to 150 miles.
It was quite a feat for those riding the full 150 and, for one man, riding the 30-mile course was just as impressive. Peter Haymond became an inspiration to many that day, as the 25-year-old didn’t let the physical limitations of cerebral palsy stop him from challenging himself.
“I think he portrayed more courage going out there and riding 30 miles than anyone riding even the 150, because it takes so much effort to even speak a word, and every step,” said his long-time friend Maize Trempert. “I am just really encouraged by him getting out there and doing it, and he had a great time.”
Haymond said it was a long ride for him, though he rides his tricycle daily and can often be seen riding across the Long Bridge or out to Dover.
“It was a lot of fun though,” he said, adding that he’s not sure yet if he will do it again next year.
His mom, Stephanie Haymond, rode with him as well, and said they enjoyed the beautiful scenery and had a wonderful time.
Cerebral palsy is defined as a group of disorders that affect a person’s ability to move and maintain balance and posture, and is the most common motor disability in children. Despite the physical limitations, Trempert said Peter Haymond is “extremely bright.” Not only does he ride his trike around town, he works, volunteers and goes to college.
Haymond has an associate’s degree already, and is working toward his bachelor’s degree in general studies through online courses with the University of Idaho. In fact, if it weren’t for the statistics class, he would have a 4.0 GPA, his mom said.
Haymond has been looking at online jobs, because he would “love” to teach online, she added.
“He’s an inspiration to our whole family,” Stephanie Haymond said, adding that he is the fifth of eight children. “He is the most cheerful, thankful person.”
While he is hoping to ultimately teach online, Peter Haymond is currently working three nights a week, pushing a broom at Super 1 Foods. For the past year, he has also volunteered at the Bonner Community Food Bank every Monday, which is where the Daily Bee caught up with him this week.
“It’s nice to go get out and work — It’s nice to have something to do,” he said.
Carol Warren, with the food bank and Rotary Club, works with the young man each week and said seeing him riding in the CHAFE was inspirational, and that he is one of the hardest-working volunteers they have at the food bank.
“He always comes in with a smile, he is just amazing,” Warren said.
Trempert said she encouraged Peter Haymond to ride the CHAFE, because she had an extra registration he could have. It didn’t take much convincing, though, as he was all for it. She said he was worn out at the end, but rode well, and as he said, enjoyed the ride.
It was about 10 years ago that Trempert said she met Peter Haymond — long before he moved to Sandpoint from Bakersfield, Calif., two years ago. Stephanie Haymond said he is always telling her, “Mom, thank you so much for all you do for me,” and that is one of the things that has always stood out to Trempert as well.
“He is one of the most thankful people you will ever meet,” Trempert said. “Every time I’m around him I’m reminded of what’s more important in life … he is such a wholesome person with such a beautiful soul.”
Mary Malone can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow her on Twitter @MaryDailyBee.