Retired US Air Force Major Bobby Renaud stands up for what he believes.
Renaud dropped into the Lillooet News office July 31 on his way to Alaska as part of a 9,600 kilometre (6,000 mile) publicity tour taking him from the US Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs to Anchorage, Alaska.
He’s doing the entire journey on a motorcycle, while standing up.
The intent of Renaud’s journey is to publicize his friend and fellow pilot Steve Hirst’s book, Still Standing – Accidental Life Lessons. Hirst was seriously injured in an automobile accident in Alaska and suffered TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury). Hirst was told he would never walk again, but through sheer determination and willpower, he learned to stand and walk again. His book tells the story of his experience with TBI and his recovery.
Renaud is driving a modified Can-Am Spider touring bike. The space-age looking, silver-coloured motorcycle has extra wheels on its sides for stability. Renaud says it’s those extra wheels that allow him to ride standing for up kilometre after kilometre.
While he’s enjoying his trip, seeing new places and meeting new people, he also admits, “My legs are killing me.”
Renaud says the trip is the least he can do for his friend. “Compared to what Steve has done, learning to walk again when the doctors said he wouldn’t, compared to that, what I’m doing is nothing.”
He added, “Steve’s story is inspirational; it’s about persistence and grace and character and determination.”
To follow Renaud on his trip, go to “fans of Still Standing” on Facebook.