Woman runs across US raising funds for brain injury
MT. PLEASANT (GTNS) — She has ridden her bike across the country, and now Jessica Goldman is going for another feat of endurance and strength: a self-supported run across the country to raise money for the Brain Injury Association of America.
She runs an average of 50 miles per day and her goal is to raise $5 per mile.
Goldman started her journey on April 16 in San Francisco en route to New York City. She ran through the Fairfield area, and she was in Mt. Pleasant Thursday, stopping at Insight Human Services to meet people and talk about her experience and why she chose to run to raise money for the Brain Injury Association of America.
“I was a passenger in a taxi that hit someone,” said Goldman. “It was a really traumatic experience, and while I’m not able to help that particular individual, I know this will help other people who are in that same situation. I also have a few friends back home who are dealing with brain injury.”
According to Goldman, all of the funds she raises for the association will go directly to the cause itself.
“The brain injury association is awesome, they aren’t taking any sort of administration costs out of the money I raise, so that is really impressive,” she said. “There are different branches [of the association] in each state, so this will help people all over the country.”
In choosing her route, Goldman explained that since she is from New Hampshire, she decided to start her trek in California and run toward her home state.
“Every time I cross into a new time zone, I get excited because I am that much closer to home,” she said.
The current official record for a woman running across the county is held by Mavis Hutchinson at 69 days, two hours and 40 minutes, a record Goldman is trying to break.
“I will actually be the 22nd woman to cross the country on foot,” said Goldman. “I will only be the second woman in history to do this self-supported. There is this site called USAcrossers.com that checks records of people crossing the country on foot since 1909. I thought that was so cool, and I needed to do this.”
While this is her first time on foot, this isn’t Goldman’s first solo trip across the country.
“Back in 1999, I rode my bike across America,” said Goldman, who also admits she didn’t start endurance running until she was in her mid-30s.
While she has found the people in Iowa friendly so far, she has noticed a difference in dealing with the traffic conditions.
“I have had people all across the way come out and support me and offer me food and shelter and really just some support and that has been great,” said Goldman. “But really, Iowa has had some of the worst drivers to deal with. Everyone seems busy and distracted. I have been run off the road four times in one day just because of drivers texting, filling out paperwork or doing other things and not paying attention while driving.”