Hiking for a Cause
- Mile 0 - Jan 26th, 2019
Hi! My name is Alan Weill, and I am about to attempt one of the most difficult but fulfilling bucket list items of my entire life; A Thru-hike of the entire Appalachian Trail.
I grew up in Jackson, MS and have always loved the outdoors. From boy scouts to cross-country treks, its good for the soul to get away for a while. I went to Mississippi State and received a Mechanical Engineering Degree, which I used to get a Job at Nissan. Nissan has provided a successful career to me which I am thankful for, and I could easily live a comfortable stable life barring any major change. This being said, I am not quite ready for that lifestyle.
Now... 3 years later and 27 years old... its time for a change. I need a dose of adventure before I settle down.
When you participate in a thru-hike experience like this, you are forced to lean out your life. Its hard to be wrapped up in buying the next best thing or worry about who to impress when you are constrained to carrying your life on your back. I love this idea, and see true value in paring down distractions to focus on the important things.
This hike will have a positive impact on my life, and I want to use it as a tool to have a positive impact on others as well. That is why I am hiking to raise money for two causes:
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
Firstly, I've struggled in the past with depression and anxiety, especially Sophomore and Junior years of college. During these times, getting out and hiking the woods on a regular basis played a huge role in defeating my depression. For this reason I encourage everyone to hike more.
Secondly, a high-school friend of mine, Thomas, recently took his life. He was a very kind, lovable person. No one could have expected it. I saw the pain and sadness in the eyes of his inner circle of friends. No one needs to go through that. If I can raise even $100, I'm confident it will work towards prevention or healing of affected relationships. Close mutual friends Tramel and Maddie are planning to hike with me during the month of May in memory of Tom.
Finally, I chose to hike for St. Jude, because...how could you not want to support those children and give them a fighting chance? They need all of the help they can get. Let's fight childhood cancer together! I encourage you to join my journey, so that we can give hope to those children every step of the way.
Thank you for your Support!
- Mile 0 - Jan 26th, 2019