MY STORY AND LIFE IN THE TEAMS
Many people have asked me why I am doing this ride and what some of my thoughts are before going on the ride. I am going to try and capture some of them so that if you are wondering, I hope I answer your questions.
After serving 33 years and 10 months in the Navy I am finally going to be able to do a ride that I have wanted to do since I was at least 15 years old. I am doing this ride because I want to do it – I am hopeful that maybe some people may desire to contribute to the Navy SEAL Foundation or any other charity that benefits our warriors. I am not being sponsored by any organization, but grateful that the Navy SEAL Foundation is hosting my daily updates.
When I was 15, I remember reading about the ride that some folks were doing as part of the bicentennial celebration. I knew that my parents would say no, how could I blame them, and I put it on the back burner for many years, but always knew it was something that I wanted to attempt. I have always loved America, its people and beauty and I have always liked riding my bicycle. To combine the two together seemed like an opportunity to good to pass up as I transition from the military into the civilian world.
I didn’t put a whole lot of thought into my route. The TransAmerica seemed like the logical choice. It has been an established route since 1976, with great maps from CyclingAdventures. The TransAmerica was the length that I was looking for, starting in Oregon, which is a great state that built one of the boats that I had under my command at Naval Special Warfare Group FOUR, and the ride finishes in Virginia a few dozen miles from where I will settle down out as I transition out of the military. The route went goes through some of the most beautiful country in the United States including Yellowstone, the Rockies and Appalacians. Picking the route a no brainer!
The time of year that I chose was also based mostly on when I was leaving the Navy. Doing some very simple math, I figured if I start on 1 May, I could finish by 4 July, which would be kind of cool riding into Yorktown, Virginia on our Nation’s birthday. Whether I meet that goal or not, only the road will tell.
DAILY BIKING ROUTINE
I plan at eating at every diner, restaurant, rest stop, or free meal that I come across during the journey. I am anxious to try all the different cuisines across our country.
I have a great set of gear that I believe will keep me warm or cool and dry across the ride. Unless I hit snowstorms or tornados, I am not very concerned about the weather.
HONORING OUR FALLEN HEROES
I plan on dedicating each day of the ride to a SEAL that has paid the final sacrifice to our Nation since 9/11. Unfortunately, almost as many SEAL’s have died since 9/11 as the number of days that it will take me to cross the country.
As I post my journal each day, I will start it off by telling everyone who I am riding for that day. Each of these SEALs information can be found in a variety of places on the internet, all amazing SEALs and Americans. I will also have that SEAL’s name pasted to my trailer as a small way of honoring his ultimate sacrifice.
If this inspires you, I encourage you to consider donating to the Navy SEAL Foundation.
I am anticipating that I should be able to update my journal each day by finding a hot spot somewhere. If I don’t, expect me to catch up, but each day will be annotated in the journal. Looking at the maps, I might have a couple of days during the first month where the ubiquitous Internet just hasn’t quite got to yet.
I have been blessed to have served with the greatest Americans, U.S. Navy SEALs. My 30 year journey in the Teams was absolutely awesome. This ride, while I am doing it for myself, was made possible by the great teammates that I had the privilege of serving with for 30 years.
God Bless the Teams and God Bless America!