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Markell reaches finish line of cross-country bike ride

Courtesy of Motivate the First State Facebook page

Former Gov. Jack Markell is back in the First State after completing his cross-country cycling trek.



Markell arrived in Rehoboth Beach and dipped a tire in the Atlantic Ocean Tuesday afternoon — 50 days after starting by the Pacific Ocean in Oregon.

In between, Markell rode 3,680 miles, or about 80 miles a day.  His journey took him through 10 states and Canada.

He says being governor — where decisions have an impact on so many people — was more challenging. But he said this ride was tough in its own, very personal way

“Certainly when you have to climb 5,000 feet and you have a stiff head wind - and you think ‘Oh my gosh, I have 45 more days of this’ - that’s difficult.  But I got through it," Markell said.  "I think it’s as much mental as its is physical.”



He said it was a great experience, but more dangerous than he ever expected.

"Some of the roads that we traveled on had very narrow shoulders, if any, they had really big trucks going really fast that didn’t give us any space. Some of the roads were pretty terrifying," Markell said.

Markell used the trip to help Motivate the First State, a group that promotes healthy living while raising money for local nonprofits.

His ride raised about $120,000 for organizations like Siegel Jewish Community Center and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Delaware.

Tom Byrne has been a fixture covering news in Delaware for three decades. He joined Delaware Public Media in 2010 as our first news director and has guided the news team ever since. When he's not covering the news, he can be found reading history or pursuing his love of all things athletic.
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