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Ironton man to ride for autism awareness

Bill Jordan, of Ironton, will spend the better part of Saturday riding around Lawrence County.

It isn’t just a way to wile away some time; his goal is to raise awareness for autism.

“I would do anything for the children,” Jordan said.

His trip is not part of any national event, just something he has done for the last three years as a way to raise autism awareness and the way people treat people with autism.

He is part of the Autism Project of Lawrence County, Ohio.

Jordan and a support team will meet at the Ironton Farmers Market around 9:30 a.m. and leave at 10 a.m. on Saturday for a ride of some 128 miles.

“We will be traveling up Route 7, all the way up to the state line there in Anthelia and traveling back through the countryside on Route 62,” Jordan said.

Because of the distance, he uses an ATV. He will be escorted by support vehicles that will be driven by his wife, Susan, who is also the project coordinator and the Autism Project of Lawrence County Ohio president Karen Reed.

“Last year, I did it on a mini bike,” he said, with a laugh.

Jordan started the ride because of his son, who was behind in developmental skills at a young age. A doctor diagnosed him with autism when he was just three years old.

“I look at him and how people treat him differently. And we just want to make people aware that they are not different, they are special,” Jordan said. “My son is 11 now and he’s just like a normal child. People look at him strangely because he is awkward.”

Jordan said his ride is not looking for donations.

“I’m just doing this out of the kindness of my heart,” he said. “I just want people to wise up and not look at the children differently.”

His son will ride along with Jordan on part of the trip.

The Autism Project of Lawrence County, Ohio meets at 6 p.m. on the first Monday of the month at the Centenary Independent Church, on State Route 243 in Ironton.

“We would love people to come out,” Jordan said.