Ernie Andrus is a World War II veteran who is running across the country for a second time. That's right, he already ran coast to coast from California to Georgia and now he's doing it in reverse, all for a good cause.
As a WWII veteran, Andrus is passionate about being an American and his time spent in the Navy. His first run cross-country was completed in 999 hours, 32 minutes and 1 second. Did I mention he was 93 years old when he arrived in Georgia? His new goal is to average 13 miles a week to make it across the country in 5 years, meaning he would be 100 years old upon completion.
FOX 59 News shared a portion of his journey.
The goal of his run is to raise funds for the LST 325 Ship Memorial, the only WWII era model of its kind left that is restored and operational. Andrus didn't raise enough money on the first trip so he is trying again. His dream is to take the ship all the way to Normandy for a D-Day Memorial.
WECT caught up with Andrus on his run, making way from Georgia to Florida, and asked if his journey was more difficult than fighting in the war.
"World War II," the 95-year-old said. "Young people, they go there looking for adventure more than anything else, get in the action, because they're indestructible, and I wasn't any different than any other teenager, but once over there, you start thinking about getting home alive."
While working as a Navy Corpsman in the Pacific, Andrus helped set up base camps for the bombing of Hiroshima.
"My job was to keep those marines alive. Never lost a patient the whole war. We had one that set the stretcher down and we thought he was dead, but he moved his head, and me and the doctor didn't get along at all," he told WECT.
Follow along with Ernie on his website, coast2coastruns.com.
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