Three things are coalescing in my life at this point in time. It seemed natural to tie them together into a single personal initiative that I call 2008 Miles of Hope. I hope that you will enjoy following my progress as much as I will enjoy the journey. So what is 2008 Miles of Hope all about? Again, three things.
1. 2008 will be the 30th anniversary of the accident that left me a C6 quadriplegic. What can I say? At fifty-something, call it a mid-life crisis, or what ever you want. It’s time to quit neglecting physical activity and to get more physically fit. I enjoy life. But to enjoy life more, I want to be stronger and healthier.
2. I’ve always wanted to complete a marathon. Long before my disability, I admired these long distance athletes. I always loved the outdoors. In my youth, I enjoyed swimming, waterskiing, sailing, hiking, scuba diving, canoeing, camping, hunting, and fishing. Running was never an enduring passion, but the thought of a long distance feat such as a marathon was always alluring. My disability seemed to end hope of such an accomplishment.
When T- did her first marathon, I got to watch. I saw handcyclists tackling the hills of Arlington in the Marine Corps Marathon. I said, “I think I could do that.” That (not well-thought out) idea turned into a challenge from T-. So I got a handbike and started training and have since been having the time of my life. When I entered my first 10K, a benefit for the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society, I was solidly hooked. I was going to start having a lot of fun fulfilling T-’s challenge!
But ever since her challenge, the images in my mind of the thousands who were running for various charities kept evoking a question in my mind: “how can I make this into not just an event…but a cause.” Which segues well into my third endeavor.
3. I have a deep gratitude towards our Nation’s service members and their families for their dedication and sacrifices while fighting the Global War on Terror. In particular, because of my disability, I am sensitive to the challenges facing thousands of brave men and women who have been wounded while protecting our liberties. I call myself a grateful beneficiary of their sacrifices. I’ve resolved to help.
Earlier this year, while looking for a running event, I found Hope for the Warriors™. I learned about all the great things this grassroots group does, such as was featured on this NBC news feature: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18043133/ . I immediately emailed my wife and said, “THIS is our cause!”
The mission of Hope for the Warriors™ is to enhance quality of life for US Service Members and their families nationwide who have been adversely affected by injuries or death in the line of duty. Hope for the Warriors™ actively seeks to ensure that the sacrifices of wounded and fallen warriors and their families are never forgotten nor their needs unmet, particularly with regard to the short and long-term care of the severely injured. Hope For The Warriors™ is a civilian organization, with 501(c)(3) non-profit status, is not a government agency and is solely supported by the generosity of individuals, corporations, and foundations in support and appreciation of those who have sacrificed in the name of freedom. Federal Tax Id#20-5182295.
I joined Team Wounded Warrior to support this great organization. My goal: to handbike over 2008 miles between now and October 2008 when I plan to complete the Marine Corps Marathon. In the meantime, I plan to take part in various running events to raise $26.2 thousand dollars for Hope for the Warriors™. So, it all comes together with what I call 2008 Miles of Hope
Visit Hope For The Warriors™ at http://www.hopeforthewarriors.org.
Help our wounded warriors on their road to recovery by supporting 2008 Miles of Hope. Give generously. You can donate easily by using my donations page at