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Veterans riding from ‘Sea to Shining Sea’

Disabled vets bicycle through Lodi on cross-country trip

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Posted: Thursday, May 31, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 6:18 am, Thu May 31, 2012.

Lodi seems to be one of the favorite locales to "pass through" town for cross country trips.

During the past few years, a young man went through Lodi to collect advice from common folks to present to Barack Obama before he was elected president. Another time, a donkey and his owner traveled through Galt, Woodbridge and Lodi on their way from Washington to Texas. In 2008, a group of American Indians walked through Lodi on a cross-country trip to commemorate the 30th anniversary of The Longest Walk.

The latest cause came Wednesday, this one on behalf of disabled veteran athletes. A group of 16 veterans injured in the Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan wars came through Lodi to show that disabled veterans can still be active, productive members of society.

The bicyclists came through Highway 12 and Kettleman Lane on Wednesday from Travis Air Force Base to Jackson. The entire trip, which began Monday, started on the Golden Gate Bridge and will continue almost 3,700 miles to Virginia Beach, Va., where they're due to arrive on July 28.

The ride, called "Sea to Shining Sea," is sponsored by World T.E.A.M. Sports, which puts on events for disabled veterans while raising awareness throughout the country, event coordinator Kim Warpinski said. The bike ride is also intended to honor fallen soldiers.

The group started its excursion Monday, going 45 miles from San Francisco to Petaluma. Tuesday, they rode 46 miles from Petaluma to Travis Air Force Base, and on Wednesday, they traveled 72 miles, mostly across Highway 12 through the Delta to Jackson.

Today, they will hit some magnificent countryside, but it will be one steep ride — more than 5,000 feet from Jackson to Kirkwood on Highway 88.

For more on their trip, visit www.s2ssbikeride.org.

Contact reporter Ross Farrow at rossf@lodinews.com.

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