Koerner on the road, late Sept.
Thank you for your patience and persistence; it’s been a while since the last post.  This is the Support Team speaking. 

Koerner would like everyone to know he’s fine and we’ve all been busy with typical life events:  he’s been working hard on college applications and essays, it was back to school for Mom the teacher, Dad started teaching his first-ever college class on top of his day job, brother Asa’s senior year of football started, plus dealing with a nasty flu in the family. 

Since the last post, Koerner has completed over 60 miles—hooray!  That’s a third of the total distance of 180 or so miles.  He has now gone from the Edsel & Eleanor Ford home in St. Clair Shores, through Detroit on Nine Mile and Seven Mile, through Southfield on to the Milford/New Hudson area, where he was paralleling Interstate 96.  Today he made it to beautiful downtown Webberville (population 1,272).  Walking facts:  he’s averaged about five miles per walking day; his longest day was 6.2 miles—doing segments of 1.5 to 2+ miles at a time.  So far so good! 

Highlights from the Road: St. Clair Shores to Milford

For several days, Mom was the Support Team, dropping Koerner off at the start of a segment, driving ahead to preview the route and then driving back to pick him up for a rest or lunch, then back to the start of the next segment.  Then “rinse and repeat”—do the same routine the next day.  Koern has also had overnight hosts—some friends, some family—who did the same for the next segments.
Dad also was on point for Support for a few days – fortunately some of those glorious sunny blue-sky days that were Septemberish and summerish all at once, the days that evoke the changes that having four seasons bring, and the days that people remember when they explain why they live in Michigan.  Dad reports enjoying the adventure, the little surprises they both discovered, and hearing Koerner’s previously unshared tales from his experiences to date.

Those are Koerner’s tales to tell, but Dad can’t resist a few teasers (no spoilers).  During his 42 miles to date, Koerner has stayed with family, friends and strangers.  He’s had unexpected glimpses into other lives and cultures during some lifetime milestones of people along the way.  He’s seen decay and abandonment and he’s seen active commerce and vibrant communal life unlike anything he grew up with.

At one home, a new friend shared a unique document with Koerner:  a personal journal written every day from 1939 to 1946.  It was an account by an aviation surgeon who served in England during World War II.  Koerner was amazed to read the entry for December 7, 1942 as the author learned about the invasion of Pearl Harbor.

At another very different point on the walk, Koerner discovered a place where older men were playing with expensive and amazing toys (Dad enjoyed talking with them).  
Koerner (and Dad) had experiences with wildlife as well, with some animals very mobile, others not very mobile at all, and still others very out of place.  Sometime soon Dad will share some photos from his Support Team experiences; we’ll notify you here.

Next Footsteps

With the first round of college essays and apps nearly put to bed, Koerner picked up a few days ago where he left off, near Island Lake State Recreation Area in Brighton.  The current stretch is Brighton to as far as Okemos/ Lansing/ Grand Ledge.  Koerner is glad to be back on the road, especially before it gets cool. 

We’ve extended the fundraising campaign on Razoo until October 30, which just happens to be Koerner’s twenty-first birthday.  As we get near his home territory of greater Grand Rapids, Koerner will be doing more media outreach and emails to friends and acquaintances about the trip.

Again, thank you for following the Walk Across Michigan for CFS and helping Koerner to raise awareness and funds.  For those who have made financial gifts, you have our deep appreciation!! Koerner is passionate about helping people, and as members of the Support Team we are gratified to see his determination, considerable efforts and achievements in carrying out the Walk to its conclusion, calendar be damned.

More from the road soon.
10/09/2012 7:22am

Looking good K man!!

Mark Buchta
10/09/2012 5:20pm

Go Koerner Go! Uncle Bubba

10/10/2012 6:49pm


Suzanne D Vernon
10/11/2012 11:13am

Way to WAM CFS!!!

Erik Johnson
10/22/2012 12:00pm

Dr Vernon.

Aren't you going to tell Koerner?

Come now! Is that really the way to go?


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