Growing up, Daniel McAlpine, 25, said he always followed his big brother Kenneth around as he went on his next adventure. Now he is embarking on one of his own.
On Monday, Daniel started a cross-Canada bike ride from his hometown of Collingwood, Ont., to Rossland, B.C., in honour of his big brother’s legacy in what he is calling the Big Ol Gerry Tour.
“He would say I’m a little bit nuts because he wasn’t a big biker like this; he was more of a mountain biker. But I think he would have been so supportive and cheering me on the whole way, and I know he is,” Daniel said.
He joked that while he thinks his big brother would have joined him for part of the trip, Daniel doubts he would have made the whole 45-day journey on a bike.
In 2017, Kenneth and his friend Ryan Lachapelle formed Team GIVE’R for the fifth season of The Amazing Race Canada and finished in second place.
In 2019, Kenneth died at the age of 28 in a hiking accident in B.C.’s Kootenay region.
Daniel hopes to honour his late brother’s passion for adventure and the outdoors while also raising money for the foundation formed in his name.
“They pushed me, and I always had to keep up, so I think that definitely pushed me into the path that I now am on. He was a larger-than-life kind of guy, and he always loved the next adventure. He always loved doing very out-there things.”
An avid adventurer and chef, Kenneth’s Amazing Race Canada partner started the Team GIVE’R Foundation in his honour to provide bursaries for students wanting to pursue a culinary education and help young people get involved in skiing and mountain biking.
Lachapelle, 31, said he and Kenneth had been best friends since high school, first bonding over a love for downhill skiing and rollerblading.
He said the foundation is based on all the things Kenneth had a passion for in life and his passion for giving back to the youth in his community.
“Kenneth, to me, was the kindest person I’ve ever met. He really brought give back into the meaning of giver, which was huge. He was he would think of others before himself on a daily basis,” He said.
Daniel said he is grateful he and his brother were able to participate in sports like skiing and mountain biking, and he is hoping to help more youth do the same.
Anyone wanting to support Daniel’s journey and donate to the Team GIVE’R Foundation can find all the information on the foundation’s website.