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Ernie Andrus is a 90-year-old World War II veteran who is — RIGHT NOW — running clear across the country!
He wants to break the record for the oldest person to ever run from the Pacific to the Atlantic. But at Ernie’s age, he can’t exactly move all that quickly.
He’s moving at a pace of about 5 miles a day, three days a week. That’s a lot more than what most people run but at that rate, he isn’t expecting to reach the finish line until his 94th birthday!
He remarked on his progress, saying:
"The older I get, the slower I go.”
Sure, he may be slow. But his determination is unquestionable.
Ernie began running last year, leaving from San Diego. He’s now trudging along through the New Mexico desert.
And while he set out on this expedition alone, Ernie has been getting some company along the way.
He’s invited locals to come out and run with him as he makes his way through the many towns along his route. Fans can follow his progress on Facebook and join him, even if only for a short jog along his incredible journey!
In addition to being older than the other famous coast-to-coast runner, Forrest Gump, Ernie is actually out here for a reason: he wants Americans to learn about the ship that he says won the war.
Mr. Andrus served on an LST 325 and explains that without it, the Allies may not have been able to defeat the Germans or the Japanese in WWII.
"This shouldn't be forgotten. Eisenhower and Churchill both made a similar remark that it's the ship that won the war. Without 'em how could you have taken all those islands? How could you have even taken Normandy?”
While thousands of LSTs were manufactured during the war, only one remains in its original configuration. It’s located on the Ohio River in Evansville, Indiana.
Ernie hopes that all Americans can find the time to visit the site of this historic ship.
Hey, if he can run across the country, we don’t think it’s too much to ask that people take a moment to learn about the importance of an LST!
Good luck out there, Ernie! We’re rooting for you!
Ch-ch-check out video of Ernie running (below)!
[Image via Facebook.]