Vancouver – Winnipeg
Alvin Siemens – Having retired from housing construction in the Vancouver area and, with my wife’s passing away two years ago, my time has been left open to a variety of service opportunities. When asked by my brother Ed to join him on the support crew, I almost instantly became excited to participate in the latest of Arvid’s exploits. This is so different from regular methods of fundraising. I also enjoy life a little on the wild side like hang gliding, or flying a light airplane upside down and/or straight down at over 200 mph (even though it’s not really built for that!). Arvid needs a lot of prayer to accomplish and overcome a lot of odds and unknowns! I really believe with God’s help this cross-Canada venture can be accomplished! I also believe Charles Mulli and his amazing team are doing God’s great commission and I want to be a part of it! And everybody that contributes to this in any way will be blessed in ways they may only find out about much later!
Ed Siemens – I grew up in Abbotsford, BC, on a dairy farm with three brothers and two sisters all whom I greatly appreciate. After high school I furthered my education at BCIT in Vancouver with Mechanical Engineering. For three years Vi and I lived just a couple blocks away from Vancouver City Hall where Arvid’s trek begins, before moving to Newton, MB. On Arvid’s 2012 cycle across Canada, Vi and I had the opportunity to be on the road crew from Winnipeg to Ottawa. We were also able to travel to MCF Kenya in 2013 to work on the Rain Harvest Project. Seeing the facilities, the rescued children, hearing the stories of rescued teens saying “Now I have HOPE,” “I want to be an aeronautical engineer, a doctor, a politician, a preacher, etc.,” made me feel even more supportive to the cause of Charles Mulli and family. I’m excited to be a part of GrandpasCan 2016 and will continue to pray for Arvid’s health, safety, and endurance for finish. Being on the road crew with my brother Al will be a treat.
Paul Smith – Over the years, one of my greatest passions has been the pursuit of a number of outdoor activities from mountaineering to white water kayaking. In 1985, I obtained Physical Education Degree with a major in Outdoor Education. I had the privilege of being taught by several members of the 1982 Mount Everest Expedition team. So my interest in extreme athletics was well entrenched. I had just retired from teaching in Winkler MB in 2011, and my wife Beth and I were having discussions about bringing significance into our retirement years. What could we do to make a difference? It was shortly afterwards, that we were invited to attend a presentation of a 56 year old Ultra Marathon Cyclist who had just set a new Guinness World record of cycling across Canada. Arvid’s passion for cycling was to bring awareness to the plight of homeless children in Kenya. Being blessed with two married kids and five grandchildren for our own, caused us reflect deeply about those children who were alone and without hope. In 2012, through a series of “divine circumstances”, we were asked to consider driving a van from Vancouver to Halifax with 11 Kenyan students and their chaperones, while Arvid attempted another World Record. As we traveled across Canada following Arvid, with the MCF kids performing at various venues, our perspective would be forever changed by these kids who had been rescued by Charles Mulli. That experience has been the basis of my desire to volunteer for the last two years as part of Arvid’s support team. We want to continue help Arivd bring awareness and funds to support Mully Children’s Family in Kenya.
Stan Wiebe – Stan is married to Sally, father to Morgan (& Steve), Rhys and Reegan and is currently enjoying his first retirement. After 29 years in the computer business, it was time to sell the business and discover what else God might have in store for him. Stan has thoroughly enjoyed his time of taking care of the household, cooking for the family (he makes a mean Sloppy Joe) and being Daddy Driver for his kids’ music, sports and school activities. Watching his kids perform in dance, music and sports has always been an important part of his life. Walking and cycling in Birds Hill Park, movie night with the family, reading and nice, ‘quiet’ rides in his 1970 Dodge Charger R/T are other things he appreciates. Stan is an avid NASCAR racing fan and enjoys most other sports as well. Stan and family attend The Church At Pine Ridge and were introduced to Arvid and the Mully Children’s Family there. Something struck a chord and they have been following and supporting ever since. In August of 2013, Stan’s daughter Morgan was part of the Medical Mission Trip to MCF in Kenya led by Adrienne and Matt Pearson. Stan is humbled and excited to be a part of Arvid’s ride this year. He has the utmost admiration and respect for Charles and Esther, Arvid and Ruth, and their families for what God has been able to accomplish through their faithful service.
Winnipeg – Halifax
Ruth Loewen – My role on support crew began pretty much the same time as Arvid began cycling! It is a privilege to partner together with him as we work on behalf of MCF. I have visited MCF in Kenya and have seen the difference they are making in the lives of children. It is amazing to stand and look into the eyes of a child that has been offered hope where previously there was none. We count Charles & Esther Mulli and their family as our friends and they continue to inspire us to make a difference in the lives of others. I always find it interesting to see how a support crew comes together each year and how God helps us all to work together for a common goal. What initially began as a family support crew in the early years has had to change due to our children all having little ones to look after. This year’s support crew is a great team of people; some rookies (Stan Wiebe, Al Siemens, Sylvain & Martine) and some veterans (Ed Siemens, Paul Smith, Weldon & Arlene). We have every confidence in this crew and thank God for their willingness to be involved in this adventure on behalf of Mully Children’s Family. When I am not supporting Arvid in his cycling endeavours, I enjoy spending time with our children and grandchildren, working part-time with the elderly, being outdoors, walking, biking and reading. We ask for your prayers for Arvid and the support crew!
Weldon and Arlene – Weldon and Arlene have been married for 39 years and have two sons, Marc and Bryan. They love serving in their church and enjoying gardening among many other past times. Before their children were born they had the opportunity to work in Jamaica for a nonprofit organization to provide steady rural employment. Those 3 years affected them profoundly with regard to their perspective towards the poor and marginalized. This will be their 4th tour of duty as support crew for Arvid. They have found each ride to have its own challenges and rewards. They believe in and support what Arvid has been called to do to raise funds for the phenomenal work at MCF.
Sylvain Baril & Martine Fontin – We moved from Quebec to Winnipeg 20 years ago in the hope of raising our children to be fully bilingual. When moving here, we discovered a German-English bilingual school program and enrolled our children, believing that them learning three languages instead of two would be far more beneficial. Unknown to us at the time was that enrolling our children into this program would be the catalyst that would revive our faith and get us closer to God. We have been blessed with meeting and knowing many Christians that have a rich, solid and transcending faith; Arvid and Ruth Loewen being amongst them. It would be far beyond our capabilities to attempt what Arvid is doing, which we believe is truly exceptional. We are honoured to be a part of the support crew and witness such an act of unconditional love and generosity in support of MCF higher purpose.
Ottawa – Halifax
Charles Mulli and his son Isaac Mulli will join the support crew.