DELAWARE WATER GAP, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – This time of year, we see a lot of bicyclists out on roads and trails. On Tuesday, Eyewitness News found one rider who was pedaling through the Poconos for a purpose, and his journey is much longer than you’d expect.
It’s a beautiful day for a bike ride. “I just love cycling,” says Erick Mogollon of Milford, Massachusetts.
Erick Mogollon has been pedaling for hours, even days. The 58-year-old retiree is traveling from Boston to Oregon. He laughs, “I don’t know where I’m at yet, but I know I’m pedaling somewhere.”
He’s taking his trip in sections, about 30 to 40 miles at a time. He’s doing it using paper maps.
Take a close look, and you’ll see several patriotic flags in tow. It’s a cross country trip for a cause.
“My main purpose is to bring awareness to the veterans who are coming back. And even more so after Memorial Day weekend, because some don’t come back,” Mogollon explains.
Rain or shine, the journey takes him through quiet back roads and major cities like Washington D.C. and Philadelphia.
“Oh, it’s been great! I’ve been meeting a lot of great people,” Mogollon adds.
People like Joyce Stallone of Kelly’s Ice Cream in Upper Mount Bethel Township.
She says with a smile, “I can’t believe him. I can’t believe he has such energy and stamina. Great guy, such a nice man.”
Erick served in the Navy for 30 years, then his two sons followed suit and served in Afghanistan. The youngest one, Elias, is still overseas and has been there the past 14 months.
“It’s tough, it’s not an easy thing, you know?” Mogollon says.
Erick says he misses his son and worries for his safety. There’s a long road ahead, but he takes it one mile at a time. “I hope for the best, yeah,” he adds.
He is two weeks into his first-ever cross country trip, and expects to reach the west coast within three months.
Erick is hoping you’ll make a donation to the ‘New England Center and Home for Veterans’ in Boston: http://nechv.org/
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