Ex-Marine Jamie Summerlin is pulling a Forrest Gump for veterans, running across America to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project.
The $40,000 he’s raised so far has helped veterans re-enter society and pay medical bills. He set off in March from the Pacific Ocean of Coos Bay, Ore., hometown of both his wife, Tiffany, and famous distance runner Steve Prefontaine. Since then, he has run through desert mirages and freezing mountain snow, expansive salt flats and a heat wave in the Great Plains. By Day 92, Summerlin was twice as tan and half the size of a pre-run self-portrait.
The Daily caught up with Summerlin in his hometown of Morgantown, W.Va., where he was applauded by the local VFW, family, friends, the contestants in the Miss West Virginia pageant and a contingent of local cyclists. Later, Summerlin passed famous POW and big supporter Jessica Lynch in the hallway of the local hotel. His bouncy stride contrasted with her limp.