ARTICLE OF THE DAY

A Call Out To Pirate Country
by Brian Meador
7/3/06

Greenville resident Robert Grant wears many hats. He's a student at East Carolina. He's a personal trainer at Gold's Gym in Greenville. He's an assistant coach with the J.H. Rose football team. The Scottish native is also an inspiration. WITN's Brent Baker told me he had a story he wanted to shoot and asked me to help over the weekend. Brent told me the guy he wanted to catch up to would be somewhere between Kinston and Greenville. I was puzzled until Brent informed me that the guy we were catching up to was a cyclist.

I wasn't that intrigued until Brent then told me that the cyclist was biking across the United States to raise money for charity. He had my attention. Grant is biking on a journey that will take him from Emerald Isle to Huntington Beach, California. A adventure spanning nearly 3,000 miles in 35 days. "I mean why not." Grant told us in his thick Scottish brogue as he pedaled across the Lenoir/Pitt County line. "When I look back with my kids or grandkids, I can say I cycled across America. I have one lifetime so I don't want any regrets."

No other cyclists or even a trail car will accompany him on his trek. He's doing it alone. "People have offered to help me and drive with me but its just something I want to do and I get to figure out a lot about myself. I love a challenge."

Grant wants to raise money to help fight Multiple Sclerosis and the disease that killed his father just last year, diabetes. "That was an illness that ripped my father apart and it was hard watching a big burly man fade away into something he didn't want to become. I'm trying to  raise a lot of money but a little bit from a lot of people goes a long way."

Grant got the fund raising ball rolling over the last couple of weeks by doing interviews on the local news and on local radio shows. You'd think he'd be able to get through to the many viewers and listeners of Eastern North Carolina. But he hasn't. To date, Grant hasn't even been  able to raise a thousand dollars. Stunning. So here's a call out to the good folks in Pirate Country and beyond. The account has been set up at Bank of America for the Robert Grant Coast 2 Coast Fund. Donations can be made at any location or by simply sending a check to:

Gold's Gym
Attn: Robert Grant Coast 2 Coast Fund
140 Oakmont Dr.
Greenville, NC 27858

Grant moved to the United States several years ago to live the American dream. He now hopes to be able to raise enough money to make a difference in at least one person's life. "I'm living my dream here in America. My favorite quote by myself is 'Dreams are just reality you have to work at a wee bit harder for.'"


Brian Meador
brian.meador@witntv.com
(more of meador's weblogs can be seen on witntv.com)