PARRIS ISLAND, S.C. — An exhausted but happy bicyclist completed his mission of riding across the United States to benefit the Semper Fi Fund Monday afternoon, Oct. 26.
“I’m here,” said Darryl Cloud, of Sidney, Tuesday morning. “I’m feeling remarkably well. Overall I’m very tired.
“I don’t have any aches or pain in my joints and muscles,” said Cloud. “I have no problems at all. Overall, I’m just exhausted.”
Cloud began his Boot Camp to Boot Camp Trip on Aug. 15 from the Marine Boot Camp in San Diego, Calif. Nearly 2,700 miles later, Cloud arrived at Parris Island in South Carolina.
His last update with the newspaper was on Sept. 26 when he arrived in Kinder, Louisiana.
“The weather remained perfect until yesterday (Monday),” said Cloud. “I knew that it was going to rain and I wanted to get to Parris Island so I could get some dry pictures. I beat the rain here by 7 or 8 minutes. It started to sprinkle and within an hour, it was pouring.”
Cloud said a welcome reception will be held Wednesday morning at Parris Island.
“I got here early and the grand finale is planned for Wednesday at 10 a.m.,” said Cloud.
Family members, Semper Fi Fund members along with several veterans groups plan to be in attendance for the event in Beaufort, South Carolina.
“I’m relaxing for the day,” said Cloud. “I’m kicking back. I don’t have to be anyplace today (Tuesday). That’s a very good feeling.”
Cloud said the weather for his journey was better than he ever anticipated.
“The weather was phenomenal,” said Cloud. “I dodged everything that was bad. I feel sorry for the ones who are still riding and are behind me.”
Cloud is expected to return to Sidney on Friday. A more in-depth story on his journey will appear in a future edition of the Sidney Daily News.
Cloud’s ride was made in support of the Semper Fi Fund. The ride was dedicated to U.S. Marine Maj. Lawrence “Larry” Helberg of southeastern Ohio. He never made it home from Vietnam and is still considered Missing in Action.
His goal for the trip is to raise $90,000, which will be used to purchase six “Action Trackchairs” or “Action Trackstanders” for disabled veterans. Each unit costs $15,000.
Donations via a credit card for fundraiser can be made at https://fundraising.semperfifund.org/fundraise?fcid=399234. Donations can also be sent to Cloud and should be made out to “Semper Fi Fund.” His address is 735 Stratford Drive, Sidney OH 45365.
The Semper Fi Fund is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing immediate financial support for injured and critically ill members of U.S. Armed Forces and their families.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4822; follow her on Twitter @MelSpeicherSDN. Follow the SDN on Facebook, www.facebook.com/SidneyDailyNews.