Cross-Country Biking with Greenville Resident for Wounded Warrior Project

Over 3000 Miles of Biking will Conclude Friday

Matthew Causey
November 05, 2019 - 5:25 pm
Cross Country Biking for Wounded Warrior Project

Mike Price and Matt Prather have spent the last month and a half waking up to breakfast in a trailer with pictures of veterans the Wounded Warrior Project has helped. This, they said, is the motivation that keeps them biking across the country every day to raise awareness for the project.

"It's totally different (traveling across the country) on a bicycle - meeting the people that we've met, spending the time with them has been one of the biggest surprises for me," Price said. "People that just walk up to us, see the trailer, see our uniforms and walk up and just tell us their stories. It's remarkable."

The two are biking on behalf of the Blue Angels Foundation, which reported that there have been more veteran suicides than combat deaths in the past 18 years.

"It's an atrocity," Prather said. "So we're trying to do something bold and big by riding across country. Hopefully we'll raise awareness for the big problem we have, and hopefully we'll raise funds and awareness to help aradicate that."

This trip began in mid September in Santa Barbara, Calif. and is planned to end this Friday in Charleston, S.C.

With them on the trip is Kathy Matejka. She has a background in athletics and thiathlons and has served as the support to the bikers on this trip. Matejka drives the trailer containing all of their gear and clothes, helps to motivate the two and works to keep the two healthy, nurished and hydrated throughout the trip.

Their mornings start at 6 o'clock in the morning and are out biking by 8. Price said the two will ride about 20 to 30 miles before their first break and then continue riding until lunch. After lunch they may have a few more breaks depending on how long the ride for the day is and what the weather is like.

"Usually that finishes up around six, dinner," Price said. "10:30 we're dead to the world and back up the next morning to start it again."

And through this daily routine, there were common daily issues from weather to mechanical problems and everything in between that the group had to adapt to.

The two bikers arrived in Greenville Saturday afternoon and rested for the weekend before continuing the trip Monday morning.

Price is a Greenville resident. "Since I'm living in Greenville now, coming into Greenville was very emotional. Going into Nashville where I'm from was very emotional," Price said. "This one's a little harder because I'm home, and now I leave home again and head out to the coast again."

Friday not only marked Price's brief return to Greenville before the last leg of the trip. Price and Prather also passed the 3000 mile mark at lunch on Friday after 36 days of biking. After resting for the weekend, the two will have another 300 miles left to ride until they arrive in Charleston, S.C. on Friday.

"It's been quite emotional," Prather said. "It's the memories for me personally, that I will keep forever. And hanging out with Mike and Cathy and all the people that we have met and the sights and sounds that we've seen on our bikes that's just been a tremendous experience."

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