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Donita

First, I love my Lord and Savior, for without his protection, guidance, and sacrifice nothing I do would be possible. I have been married to the one and only Bill Walters for 26 years. Together we have led a life full of adventure. We have 3 amazing children. Matthew Harrison is 24 and engaged to Amanda Nelson, Julia Walters-Williamson married Sam Williamson on October 10th 2014, and our youngest, Adam will graduate high school June 2016. I am incredibly proud of my children. They all have a love for adventure and the outdoors.

I teach 8th grade alternative school with Kokomo Center Schools. I am the varsity swim and dive coach for Kokomo High School as well as the head coach of Howard County Aquatics, a USA developmental swim program of which I am very proud!

My love of cycling began when my mother moved us to Walton, Indiana. I remember riding my bicycle to my grandparents 8 miles away and feeling an amazing sense of freedom. I remember feeling a sense of accomplishment and was always so proud of these “long” rides when I was only 13. No matter where Bill and I would travel, we always had bikes in tow. During good weather, I typically ride my bike 12 miles to school. Recently, I have learned to embrace the darkness so I could continue my rides with the changing seasons. I love challenging my body to century rides and have many family and friends to thank for encouraging me to always press on.

I have a deep love of the west. Bill and I own a cabin at 10,000 feet in elevation outside of Fairplay, Colorado. Our family enjoys climbing the Colorado 14ers( America’s highest peaks). Bill is my number one cheer leader. Summer of 2015 I am proud to say I had 12 athletes and 2 chaperones on top of Mt. Democrat (14, 148 ft.) I do enjoy sharing adventures and experiences that will change others’ lives.

My goal for our coast to coast ride is to accomplish this dream I have had for years. Each day I ride to school I have “Forest Gump” kind of moments….I wonder what it would be like to ride non-stop ….across the USA. Facebook allowed Kristy Massey and I to reconnect. Together we share the love of adventure, physically demanding challenges, and most importantly cycling. Kristy and I also both have an incredible appreciation for our armed forces and those who sacrifice so we can live our dreams. Our goal is to raise $3800, or one dollar for every mile we ride, to support “Homes for the Troops”. While we challenge ourselves, and live our dream, we want to help soldiers who are coming back from battle needing our support.

Follow me on this amazing journey as I write about our ride daily whenever we have internet access.  Thank you for your support.  This truly is a dream.

 

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Kristy

In a nutshell, I grew up in IN and went to college in OK where I met my husband.  We got married in 1993 and moved around with the military for 7 years.  We ended up in Blythewood, SC in 2002 and have been here ever since.  I have been very fortunate to be a stay at home mom to three incredible people. It’s been an exciting adventure to be their mom and watch them grow up.  I am so proud of all three of them.  God has blessed me abundantly.

Currently I am a freelance sports photographer for The Independent Voice of Blythewood & Fairfield County as well as GoFlashWin.com  I also travel and do some landscape photography.  My hope is to do more landscape photography and pursue that in a few years when my youngest son graduates from high school in 2017.

I have always loved bicycling and went on several cycling summer camps when I was young.  The idea of crossing the country via bike was planted when I was 16 years old and went on my first tour in 1986 with a group out of Upland, IN.  We road through Vermont and New Hampshire. I was hooked. This was the real deal… traveling through whole states and seeing different parts of the country that I never would have seen. I loved it. It was determined then, that yes, one day I would ride from ‘sea to shining sea.’

As things happen in life, this dream was shelved. I didn’t even own a bike for over 20 years. When I finally got a bike I hardly road it because I allowed the business of a mom’s schedule to overtake me. In 2012, I dusted my bike off and took my first 4 day self-guided tour in SC from the  “Mountains to Sea” with no training and brand new to the clipless pedals. I used the backroads in SC and slept in hotels.  It was on that trip that the spark of riding across the country was rekindled.  I wanted to make this a reality before 2020, before I hit the big 50.

In 2014 I planned another self-guided tour. This time I road down the coast from Nags Head, NC to Hilton Head, SC, for 560 miles… My ‘Head to Head‘ tour. While on this trip the planning for our Coast to Coast trip actually started to take root. A girlfriend, Donita Walters, from high school contact me, via Facebook, and we agreed to do our first Coast to Coast trip together in the summer of 2016. Gotta love Facebook!

We are actually making this happen 30 years later after my very first bike tour.  Donita and I share not only the love and passion for adventure and cycling, but also for our troops.  It is in this bond that we will gladly take on the challenge of riding 3800 miles to raise money for “Homes for our Troops”.  So I hope that you will help us meet our goal and join us as we partner with HFOT on this wandering project of ours.

I would love for you to follow my adventure.  Your comments and support will help keep me motivated.

 

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