George Reed appreciative of support from Rider Nation
REGINA -- George Reed has given Rider Nation plenty to cheer about on the field and has contributed just as much off the field through his charity work in the province.
Now, Rider fans have an opportunity to give back to the 80-year-old Saskatchewan Roughriders’ legend through a GoFundMe page set up to help cover his medical costs.
Eric Johnson set up the page after discussing it with Reed, his wife Angie and daughter Georgette with a goal of raising $50,000. As of Thursday evening, more than $13,000 has been donated.
“George said, ‘I’ll take all the help I can get’, so that told me that it would be a good thing to set up a GoFundMe page for him and raise some money so we can help him improve his quality of life,” Johnson said.
The Reeds are regulars at Johnson’s Smokin’ Okies restaurant in Regina.
Over the past few years, Reed has lost mobility following back and hip surgeries. He needs a walker to get around and goes to physiotherapy twice a week, but he’s showing the same determination he had on the field and wants to work towards being able to walk on his own again.
“We’re trying to overcome that and trying to get better, so that’s what we’re working on,” Reed said. “I just finished physio this morning and we’ll continue to work on it and hopefully I can get rid of my walker, my partner.”
Since moving back to Saskatchewan more than a decade ago, Reed has been a regular at charitable events around the province, however, he’s had to withdraw from charity work due to his mobility issues. He says he wants to get back out into the community.
Reed adds he appreciates the support that he’s received from Rider Nation so far, “It’s very important to know that the people out there think enough about what I’ve done and what I’ve meant to the province to want to chip in and help out and I really appreciate it.”
Reed’s number 34 is retired by the Riders and fans have been using his number to honour him with numerous donations of $34, $134 and $340.