A group of high school rowers from Western New York are making a grueling trip across the state. As YNN's Erin Clarke tells us the students are rowing more than 300 miles to help find a cure for juvenile diabetes.
BALDWINSVILLE, N.Y. -- Canisius and McQuaid High Schools are usually rivals, but for eight days their rowers are working together.
"When Reid came to me with the idea of rowing across New York, down the canal, I said we should probably do it for something like a cause," said Canisius Senior, Jack Ruh.
Row for JDRF, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, is a non-profit group comprised of members of the two teams rowing along the Erie Canal to raise money to fund research for a cure for a devastating disease that strikes over 15,000 children every year, or 40 per day. The trip from Buffalo to Albany is a long 340 miles. It's grueling, but rewarding.
"We get to see these people that really appreciate what we're doing. When we stopped in Pittsford a young man came up and hugged us and that was very touching," said Reid Yankowski, Canisius High School Senior.
"When we do see these people that have it, it's awesome, because now we know who we're rowing for. We're rowing for a face," said Ruh.
With four more days to go, the group has already raised 52 thousand dollars for kids like that. They quickly surpassed their $25,000 goal and have now raised the bar to $60,000.
"One of the philosophies at Canisius is 'To be Men for Others' and I think these guys are truly that," said Canisius High School Rowing Coach, Tom Flaherty.
To find out more about Row for JDRF visit their fundraising page. A video with more information about this event can also be viewed on You Tube under JDRF Row.