A student at Arrowhead Elementary School in East Setauket is going the extra mile to fight childhood cancer.
Joseph Peritore, a fifth-grader, has raised more than $6,200 during the past two years for the Children's Cancer Research Fund through his participation in the Great Cycle Challenge, a fundraising initiative held in conjunction with Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in September. He rode as part of a team coordinated by his father, Joseph.
To raise the funds, the younger Joseph solicited pledges from family and friends based on his efforts to bike a total of 50 miles over the course of the month. He completed his miles riding on everything from nature trails to neighborhood streets to even spinning bikes at Crank Cycle in Setauket, he said.
This year, he divided the miles among five rides — the longest of which was 15 miles.
"It helps kids with cancer, and I don't think they should be fighting at my age," Joseph said of his efforts. "I also like to ride my bike, so I'm doing something I like while helping."
Last year, Joseph raised more than $3,400, ranking first in his age group statewide and in the top 10 nationwide, his family said.
Joseph, 10, is also a member of his school's football and lacrosse teams, and he participates in jiujitsu outside of school.