64 Year-Old Veteran Runs Solo Across Death Valley in Heat of Summer for Charity
By: The Way to Happiness Foundation
So for John Radich to say, "I don't think I've ever been that tired in my life," means something.
In the middle of one of the hottest summers on record, at 64, John Radich ran 135-mile non-stop, solo, while pushing a 75-pound baby jogger with supplies from Whitney Portal Road (8100 feet), across Death Valley, to Badwater Basin (-282 feet), the lowest point in the Western Hemisphere…in only 61 hours.
Running an average of 40-50 miles per day, he braved scorpions and rattle snakes, potentially deadly windstorms with winds topping 75 miles per hour and temperatures that reached a blistering 127 Fahrenheit (over 180 Fahrenheit on the asphalt). He recounts his adventure with surrealistic calmness:
"Last year I got bit by scorpion. This year I was lucky, I didn't get bit by anything.
"At one point, I was running 13 miles up a 10% grade up-hill. Oh, my god, you can't run on the up-hills unless you're a super-human cyborg," John said, as if anyone could run 135 miles across Death Valley in the middle of summer.
Why was John doing this?
John is a Goodwill Ambassador for The Way to Happiness Foundation, a non-profit organization based in Glendale, California, with chapters in many countries around the world. Its purpose is to uplift kids, families, towns and entire countries by instilling decency and social responsibility using the booklet, The Way to Happiness.
To put it in John's words:
"I am an ultra marathoner. It's a passion. I thrive on adventure. It's you versus the environment. Death Valley is the hottest place in the world. It's a God-given gift but to be able to do it and to help a Foundation that helps kids stay clear of drugs, and helps them with bullying and helps them to make good choices – I couldn't run across Death Valley on my own without a purpose.
"Some patches were rough; the heat was getting to me. But, you know, the world is tough – people getting shot and overdosing on drugs and human trafficking. In my own little way, by doing this, I AM making a difference on this planet."
Additional photos as well as interviews with Mr. John Radich are available at request.
More information about The Way to Happiness Foundation and its programs can be found at www.TheWayToHappiness.org.
To donate, go to www.GoFundMe.com/
Page Updated Last on: Sep 06, 2018