Journal entry, 10-4-06
I started this walk to continue carrying the torch that Steve Vaught lit. I believed in what he was doing and I wanted
to continue inspiring folks across America as he did. Only after I started my journey did I find out that he did not
want me to continue carrying his torch. So I lit my own torch and started this journey anyway. I trusted in God to
keep me safe and he has done so.
I do not want any fame or glory for this journey. I feel that Steve Vaught is the one if you are looking for a hero. I
have turned down help from a lot of folks because I felt they needed it themselves. My wife Cheryl has worked
very hard and I have an Army retirement that has sustained us for the biggest part. I did accept help from many
folks as I needed it. I want to give those of you a special thanks.
After teaming up with Bert and Judi Herring, I have decided to make this walk about their effort to bring their fast-5
way of life to the attention of America. When I return home, I will return to my normal life and live the fast-5 plan to
stay healthy. In my opinion, they are true heroes for their efforts.
If I have inspired anyone along the way to want to lose weight, then it was well worth my efforts. I will continue this
walk until I get home. I am so proud of my weight loss and I will take care not to ever get fat again.
My life has changed since I have been out here. I can't explain it. I have given it my all. I could not have tried
harder to lose this weight. I have wanted to lay down and die and get the pain and suffering over. But God has
seen me through the rough times. To all of you that have entered my life, thank you so much for your kindness. I
will do my best to be kind to others as you were to me.
Dr. Judi Herring is keeping a very good journal about our journey. I have given her permission to write the good
and bad about me. I have done so to help her and her husband Bert reach the world with the problems of being
obese and how to most effectively lose weight and maintain a health life style. I will do all it takes to assist them
because I feel their cause is so important. Take care all, Gary, "Keep on Walking, one foot in front of the other."
Journal entry, 10-9-06
I am happy to report that I weigh 255 lbs as of yesterday afternoon. Here are some pictures that were taken today
and over the last few days.
I am about 1/3rd the way across N.M. I plan on making it to St. Louis by early December. I am still doing from 18 to
20 miles a day. I have become stronger and may even start walking 25 miles a day. The weather is getting much
colder and I am not sure if we can keep up the good distance through bad weather. I will try my best. Take care
all, Gary, "Keep on Walking, one foot in front of the other.
Journal entry, 10-15-06
Today I weighed in at 247 lbs. I am losing weight as expected. This fast-5 lifestyle is really working for me. I am
very impressed about how it is working.
Today I walked into Ft. Sumner. It has been raining all day. I have been getting very wet lately.
Here are some random pictures.
Journal entry, 10-21-06
Today I weigh 239lbs
Journal entry, 10-27-06
Today was a very windy day. I started walking at day light 18 miles west of Wheeler, Texas. I am not sure what
day I will get to St. Louis. I think it will be in December for sure. I want to lose another 35 lbs at least before I walk
under the Arch. I am sure I will lose that much well before I get to St. Louis.
I am so happy that I am almost home. I can't believe that I have walked this far and lost so much weight. I think
that I would have lost the weight just by walking across America, but I have to really give a lot of credit to Mary and
Dr. Judi for teaching me the correct way to eat. I am sure now that I will be able to keep the weight off.
A couple of days ago when I left Amarillo I had one of the worse days of my adventure. It started out ok, but soon
became a nightmare. I was walking by a Pepsi plant and I thought it would be nice to go inside and let all the folks
there know that I appreciated what they were doing because I always drank a diet pepsi every day and it was the
highlight of my day. They were such nice folks I stayed for a while telling them all about my adventure. They gave
me a pepsi hat and 2 bottles of pepsi to take with me.
Soon after leaving there I decided to take a break on the side of the road. The train tracks were about 50 feet
from the road but I thought it would be nice to go over and sit next to the tracks and rest. Boy, was that a mistake.
After a couple of minutes a train came by and stopped. The conductor came out and told me that someone had
called in about a dead man beside the tracks. I apologized for their trouble and told them I would go on and not sit
close to the tracks again. Just a couple of minutes later a deputy sheriff arrived and apprehended me. I sat in the
squad car for nearly an hour while he checked me out. He filed an incident report on me and was letting me go.
Suddenly a Railroad Police stopped and told me I had committed a class B felony and he wanted to arrest me.
Once again I was asked for my Identification. He said it was a very serious offence stopping a train. I told him that
I did not stop the train, that the train stopped on its own. The Deputy Sheriff explained to him that I checked out ok
and that he did a report on the situation already and recommended that he let me go. Soon after that the Railroad
Policeman realized that I really didn't mean to stop a train or trespass. He decided to let me go. I spent about
another half an hour explaining to both of them about the diet fast-5. They were both interested and wanted to
know more, so I told them where Mary was waiting for me and they could go there and meet her and she would
give them a book. They soon returned and said she was not there. They must have been thinking that I made
that part up just to get rid of them. I got their addressed and told them that I would send them a copy of the book.
They wished me well. I promised to stay away from the railroad tracks and they left. Soon after they left, some one
called in with a cell phone and said that a man with a backpack was snooping around a fence by the railroad. So
the deputy once again came out to see why I was snooping. I told him that I didn't do such a thing. He informed
me that a highly secure compound was near by and their entire security force was alerted about me and were
looking for me. They were armed and serious. I suddenly didn't feel very well. By this time my entire day was shot
and all I wanted to do was get out of Texas. The deputy assured me that he was able to stand them down and not
to apprehend me. I was very happy to hear that. Judi and Mary had driven by me just a few minutes earlier and I
told him that he could go back to where they probably were and get a copy of the book. He radioed the railroad
policeman and they both went there. Little did I know that Judi was out of the book. She had given out all she had.
The policemen went there but there were no more books. I was sad to hear that because they probably were
thinking that I was giving them the run around.
These pictures were taken at
a friends house in Soccoro
This picture was taken in
Arizona, just before N.M.
This was taken a few days ago in
Pie Town, N.M. The lady with me
owns the Pie-0-Neer cafe. Her
name is Kathy and she put me up
for the night in an extra room at
the cafe. She is really kind and
helps strangers along the way.
This was a bear rug in a
cafe in Datil, N.M. It kinda
reminded me of my
encounter with a bear
Some friendly folks from
I wonder if only fat
people can buy
Has anyone seen the Arch?
This was painted on a wall
somewhere in Arizona
I don't think who ever wrote this
did it for me. Looked like it had
been there a while. But who knows.
I wore the heel off this shoe. I
normally don't wear them out
this bad. I have worn out 7 pair
of Aetrex, 1 pair of Spira and 2
pair of New Balance. Aetrex
have done the best for all
around comfort and endurance,
thanks to Foot Efx for donating