Jim Ray's cross-country bike ride ends at the Atlantic Ocean

Recreational sports director completes trip five days sooner than planned to raise money for Special Olympics | May 24, 2004

After 23 days marked by drenching rains, desert heat, mountain climbs and less-than civil drivers, Jim Ray, on his bike, and his wife, Donna, in their car, arrived in St. Augustine at a teal-blue signpost pounded into the sands of Florida's northeast coast.

Ray, Xavier's recreational sports director, rode a bike 3,166 miles after leaving San Diego, Cal., on May 1. They encountered only one flat tire and some inclement weather. The worst complications they faced were from construction workers, truckers and drivers who didn't like being inconvenienced for a few minutes by a guy on his bike and the car motor-pacing behind him.

In his final journal entry, kept mostly by Donna, Jim Ray writes: "Having the opportunity to ride from San Diego, Cal., to St. Augustine, Fla., was a dream come true for me. I told Donna at the beginning of the trip that I was living a dream and now it’s done. The great part about it is I was able to help Special Olympics accomplish a number of goals with fundraising while 'living the dream'."

The final installment of the journal, with picture galleries, is available online. The original story and first journal installment are also available online.