Jamie Dressel is standing up for a worthy organization while sitting on the seat of his bicycle. He plans on traveling 3,000 miles through the southern part of the United States for donations to March of Dimes.
“It’s a wonderful organization,” he said. “I have a friend who wanted to have a child. She had one and he died. She is now very active in the March of Dimes. I wanted to make this trip about something other than just the miles. I want it to be for the March of Dimes.”
The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters nationwide and its premier event, March for Babies, the March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, and premature births.
His 3,000-mile journey begins today in St. Augustine, Fla., and will take him through Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona with a final destination of San Diego, Calif.
This is not the first trip for Dressel.
“I did a cross-country trip in 2006 through the northern states,” he said. “I’ve always wanted to do it again. This past March, I lost my job after 20 years. I thought I would turn a negative into a positive.”
Dressel funded both trips. However, this one will include a challenge to everyone to sponsor him in his endeavor — 1 cent for every mile equates to $30. All the money will benefit March of Dimes.
“I’m not keeping any of it,” he said. “I’ll fund the trip and pay for everything I need. Anything received goes to the March of Dimes, 100 percent.”
Dressel was in Warren County last week visiting his parents, Patrick and Vendetta, who relocated into the area from Iowa about 10 years ago.
“My brother moved to Nashville,” said Dressel. “They came for a visit and fell in love with the area. When they were set to retire, this is where they wanted to do it. I live in Wisconsin.”
While visiting the Southern Standard to share his story, Dressel had a first in his travels.
“For the first time ever, and I’ve traveled thousands of miles on this bicycle, a bird has pooped on my bicycle,” he said laughing. “That’s probably going to go in my blog. Right here in front of the Standard, I got pooped on.”
For updates on his trip, he will share those with followers via his travel blog at www.trainingwheelsnotincluded.blogspot.com, as well as via Facebook and a designated fundraising page through the March of Dimes March for Babies site at www.marchforbabies.org/jdressel.