Derby cyclist to start 700-mile ride to raise awareness of immune disorder

A Derby man will begin a 700-mile bike ride Saturday as part of an effort to help fight an immune disorder that killed his daughter.

Paul Douglas Myers will join five other riders from Missouri, Tennessee, New York, Puerto Rico and Canada on a seven-day ride from Jackson, Miss. to the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in Ohio to raise awareness of an under-diagnosed disorder called hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH).

Myers lost his 5-year-old daughter Annie to the disorder last year. She had first been misdiagnosed at the age of 18 months. The disorder affects only one out of 1.2 million children a year, and is easily missed because it mimics common childhood infections or the flu.

Most of the other riders who will join Myers also lost children to the disorder. One of the riders survived it.

Myers made a similar ride to raise awareness of HLH last year, pedaling from Clinton, Okla., to St. Louis.

The cyclists hope to present a check for $75,000 to the HLH Center of Excellence at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, where a conference will be held that weekend.

Individuals or corporations wishing to help can visit Daily videos from the ride will be uploaded to the site.