93yo veteran completes run across USA

  • 22/08/2016
Ernie Andrus has been running three days a week, about six miles a day (Facebook)
Ernie Andrus has been running three days a week, about six miles a day (Facebook)

After nearly three years running across the United States, 93-year-old Ernie Andrus has reached the Atlantic Ocean.

The World War II veteran ran across the country over two years, 10 months and 20 days, starting in San Diego and ending in Brunswick, Georgia. He dipped his toes in the Atlantic Ocean on Saturday morning (local time).

Hundreds of people, wearing "Run Ernie, Run!" t-shirts, flocked to the finish line to see Mr Andrus arrive, including family and friends who had joined him at different times along his cross-country jog.

"Oh, it's great," Mr Andrus told the Brunswick News, with no sign of tiredness. "I'm glad to have finished and met the goal. But I wish it wasn't over."

It all began with Mr Andrus, a Navy medical corpsman, wanting to raise money to return a WWII-era ship from the US back to Normandy, France, for the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landing.

The LST 325 helped bring men and machinery ashore at famous beach battles like Normandy, but now - the last of its kind in active service - it is quickly becoming a part of history.

"I'll tell you what, he's a tough old man," veteran John Tallent told the Brunswick News.

"Even if he doesn't raise another dime, the attention he's brought to WWII, and the sacrifice those men made, has just been phenomenal."