Tyler Robinson Foundation
Credit: Tyler Robinson Foundation

The latest project to be headlined by the Tyler Robinson Foundation, an organization that’s sole mission is to help families suffering from pediatric cancer, is a highly ambitious cross-country tour. Simply titled Operation: Road Trip, the project will see members of the foundation driving along the east coast to a variety of hospitals where they will award hefty grants and share stories to affected families. While similar to a bike campaign that the foundation sponsored in 2015 (referred to as CanCo), this year’s road trip plans on taking it to a much higher level. 

The Tyler Robinson Foundation has shown no shortage of growth over the last few years. Throughout the week the foundation will be holding galas in many of the cities that they’ll be visiting during the road trip in coordination with the Hard Rock Heals Foundation. “The growth has been incredible,” says 15-year old Geoffrey Alintoff, a key member for the foundation since he was 12-years old. “Back in 2012 when they first started, we could never have done this.”

Geoffrey’s contribution to the Tyler Robinson Foundation has been insurmountable for both their cause and self-image. A native of Marlboro, New Jersey, Geoffrey attended an Imagine Dragons concert when he was 12-years old, where he heard a speech from frontman Dan Reynolds about how his friend Tyler Robinson had just passed away, and brought up the foundation. Geoffrey was moved by these sentiments, and pledged to help the Tyler Robinson Foundation in any way that he could.

From that point on, things fell into place for Geoffrey in a rather unexpected way. Geoffrey’s father, Scott, had just seen Kenneth Langone, an early financier for the founders of Home Depot, speak at a salt convention in Las Vegas. Scott told his son that Mr. Langone really seemed like someone who knew how to make a difference in the world, and recommended reaching out to him. Geoffrey did just that, and did very much receive a letter back from him. Geoffrey wrote a thank you letter back in response, only to receive another letter after that, and so-on and so-on.

As unlikely a epistolary relationship may seem between a teenage boy from New Jersey and an octogenarian former-CEO might seem in this day and age, this chance friendship sparked wonders for The Tyler Robinson Foundation. Lengone is one of the principal beneficiaries of the NYU Langone Medical Center, and helped The Tyler Robinson Foundation form a partnership with them. “One letter can make all the change,” says Geoffrey with unabashed enthusiasm.

Operation: Road Trip will see the Tyler Robinson Foundation give out a grant of $12,000. Still, the organization stresses while they’re overjoyed to have the ability to give out this much money, the primary focus of the trip is still to raise awareness and heighten inspiration. Just like for CanCo, the foundation plans to make documentary videos about people that have been affected by pediatric cancer, and raise their cause’s publicity. Geoffrey is also hopeful that Imagine Dragons will fully support Operation: Road Trip, and perhaps even play these videos at their concerts.

If Operation: Road Trip proves successful, the Tyler Robinson Foundation will hold similar fundraisers in the future as well. “I’d like to have really big events. Not just galas, but carnivals,” says Geoffrey in boyish delight. “I’d like big events that would allow all ages to come. It might sound far-fetched, but I’d like to see it happen.” Then again though, the progress that the Tyler Robinson Foundation has already achieved may have also seemed far-fetched a few years ago. The foundation’s steady growth, although built around a tragedy, is certainly a cause for people to be inspired about achieving their goals and passions, in a world where optimism hasn’t been particularly prevalent as of late.

For more information on The Tyler Robinson Foundation, click here.