Priscilla and Jerry Rhoads, her Cycling Chauffer
Priscilla is a cycling dog. In the past 10 years she has often been seen on the roads between Colver Park and Talent. Having missed only a few riding days in her life, it is estimated that she accumulated over 30,000 miles while being towed by a recumbent tricycle. To accomplish this feat of endurance, she enlisted the aid of one of our Siskiyou Velo Club members, Jerry Rhoads.
Jerry began preparing for the position of dog chauffer in 1975 when his brother talked him into training for a bicentennial crossing of the United States in 1976. The brothers completed the event but were unable to get a ride back to California. They turned their bikes around and re-crossed the US to get home.
To further prepare himself for riding with Priscilla, Jerry participated in many super-endurance events. He completed the daunting “Markleeville Death Ride” (130 miles and 16,000 feet of climbing in one day) several times. He entered the famous “Paris-Brest-Paris” event (720 miles) and finished under the 90-hour limit. Many years he rode over 15,000 miles – and that did not include the miles with the trailer and Priscilla.
Over the years, Priscilla went through several bikes and at least three trailers but had only one man. Priscilla took her last ride in early December. A week later, Jerry was honored by the Velo Club for having been a member for over 30 years. He smiled when he saw the framed certificate and quietly passed away a few days later, on December 26.
Priscilla has now moved to California and regales her new dog friends with stories of cycling the roads of Oregon.
Many thanks to Jerry’s good friend, Bill Tout, who wrote this memory of Jerry and Priscilla.