FOX News 5 San Diego: Former Marine embarks on transcontinental ride

March 19th, 2012

Fox News 5 San Diego | Fox5sandiego.com | March 19, 2012

ENCINITAS, Calif. -- A 71-year-old former Marine said Monday he will make a transcontinental ride on a bicycle-like contraption to raise funds for the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund.

Rick Hermelin, who has run in 100 marathons and 100 half-marathons, said he will begin his journey Friday at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot at Perris Island, S.C., and hopes to complete it 100 days later at the MCRD in San Diego.

Hermelin has been training in North County recently.

FOX 5 SD  Rick Hermelin

Rick Hermelin. Photo by Fox 5 San Diego


He wants to raise $10,000 for the Semper Fi Fund, a charity that helps injured Marines and their families.

Hermelin plans on covering an average of 30 miles a day to stay on schedule.

“The challenge that I’m facing is small compared to the challenges that [injured Marines] have to face, whether they're challenges are physical or mental,” Hermelin said.

He will be riding an Elliptigo, a cross between a bicycle and an elliptical trainer. Moving the foot pads up and down turns the wheels of the device, which is made in Solana Beach.

“There is nothing better than a former Marine helping out our current Marines,” Semper Fi Fund Community Events Coordinator Laura Castellvi said. “Not only is he going to be raising money for the Semper Fi Fund, he is also going to be raising awareness all across the United states.”

Hermelin will fly to South Carolina on Tuesday to prepare for the start of the journey.

You can follow Hermelin's journey on his travel blog.

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