The Gumpathon reach the half way mark

After teaming up to follow in Forrest Gump's footsteps and run the entire breadth of the USA, the stealthy team of six US and UK armed forces have made it to Oklahoma
Tom Hank's lovable simpleton Forrest Gump may have decided to keep on running for no apparent reason, but this month six men with a much bigger incentive are following in his footsteps. On September 10, six men from three of the world's finest fighting forces set off on their coast to coast tour across America, and we're pleased to announce the Gumpathon team have reached Oklahoma City, which marks halfway on their epic challenge to run 3,530 miles coast to coast across America to raise funds for injured service men and women on both sides of the Atlantic. The team have crossed two time zones, 11 states and five mountain ranges along their journey so far, with many more challenges to come. The going has not been easy as the team have had to endure blistering temperatures and are on average running a minimum of 16 miles each every day. The heat from the tarmac on the roads saps their energy and makes every step difficult. However, the runners are managing to put one foot in front of the other, spurred on by their target to raise £1million for three service charities, In the UK - The Royal Marine Charitable Trust Fund and Help for Heroes and The Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund in The States. The kindness and hospitality of the Americans that they meet on the route has kept them going. However, one of the biggest challenges they have had to face whilst on the road is the local stray dogs who seem to want a piece of Marine for dinner. Gumpathon 2This challenge is the brain-child of Colour Sergeant Damian Todd; Royal Marines who, after watching the film Forrest Gump in 1996 thought that running across America seemed like an interesting idea. After twelve years of thinking about it, in 2008 Damian found a reason to put his plan into action when a close friend Mark Ormrod was left with serious permanent disability following his tour in Afghanistan. Mark became the first triple amputee of the war in Afghanistan and is running a mile a day with the team. US Marine Gunnery Sergeant Charles ‘Chunks’ Padilla urges the US and UK to unite to support this incredible cause, 'Take time to think about the Marines and Sailors that are fighting for your country, defending our way of life. For some it’s a minute thought, for others we adore and love our troops. So this is a chance to do something for our wounded servicemen and women and make a difference in their life, they need our help. They have given their all can you please give something back to them.'
To donate to the boys, visit


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