“With apologies to Lou Gehrig I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth to have known my wife Joan for over four decades,” Dave Brown says in the preamble to his blog, ocjoan.blogspot.com. “I am a better person because of her."
Joan passed away from ovarian cancer in August of 2011, and Brown is honoring her memory in a 227-day cross-country walk, beginning next month.
“Before she passed away from the dreaded disease she told me if there was anything that I could do to use her experience to help other women with ovarian cancer she was for it,” the preamble continues.
“This is the reason for the walk.”
On February 28, Brown will set out on a seven-and-a-half month trek from Atlantic City to San Francisco, with hopes to raise $110,000 for ovarian cancer research, and to share the “many benefits of walking.”
The trip will take Brown through 14 states and will cover 2,995 miles at an average of 14 miles per day, traveling mostly on US Route 40 from Atlantic City to St. Louis and US Route 50 from St. Louis to San Francisco.
Both Dave and Joan have walked thousands of miles as part of the Liberty Bell Wanderers chapter of the American Volkssport Association – a group dedicated to “Volkssporting,” a non-competitive recreation program in which groups form “walks” around historic and scenic sights throughout the United States.
Approaching the end of his trek in San Francisco, Brown will do the 12K Golden Gate Bridge and the 6K San Francisco AVA walks that he did with his wife on July 1, 2007.
Additionally, Brown will recreate photos that were taken in a book Joan gave him in the 1980s, which chronicled one couple's travels along Route US 40 in the 1980s.
Brown, who retired from Vanguard in July, has only missed four days of training since retirement. His minimum workout is three hours of walking or biking, or two hours in the gym.
Brown, who will update his blog daily as the walking begins, is in need of help with lodging along his route. A detailed itinerary is posted with the photos in this article, and is also linked on his blog.
If you are able to help, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 610-906-6252.
To donate to Brown’s “Walk Across America," click here.
For more information on Volkssporting, visit the American Volkssport Association website.