British Man Recreates Forrest Gump's Legendary Cross-Country Run to Raise Money for Charity
· · Feb 4, 2023 ·

It's one of the great all-time classic sequences in cinematic history:

And this British guy went ahead and re-created it simply because he "just felt like running!"

Okay it was for a slightly more noble purpose than that:

Before she passed away in 2002, Rob Pope's mother, Cathy, asked him to promise her one thing: Do one thing in his life that would make a difference.

For him, that meant something no one else had ever done before: "There were only a few hundred people that had run across America, but nobody had done the Forrest Gump run. It was a bit of a lightbulb moment."

That's a pretty unique "lightbulb moment." I've never had one quite like that before.

But I digress:

A veterinarian by trade and an experienced marathon runner, Pope began the first leg of his journey in Mobile, Ala., in September 2016, in a bid to raise money for the World Wide For Nature (WWF) and Peace Direct.

He dressed in lookalike versions of the famous plaid shirt, chinos and cap worn by Gump — and, like the character, started out clean-shaven but ended up with a beard every bit as unkempt as the eponymous hero's.

That's what we like to call "method acting."

And this guy really, really went the distance, no pun intended:

He also encountered everything that Mother Nature could throw at him, including blizzards and forest fires. In Alabama, there were temperatures in excess of 100 degrees. "I was changing my shirt maybe four or five times a day," he recalled. "I would wring my shirt out and there would be half a pint of sweat dripping out."

And then there was the snow in Death Valley. "That was mad," Pope said. "It's the hottest place on the planet and there I was running through it with snow falling all around."

Very impressive. What's even crazier is that he found time to run another race while running across the country, popping in to do the Boston Marathon just for kicks:

Someone in the crowd even handed him a beer as he approached the 11-mile mark.

"As an experienced runner, I know it's not really the ideal hydration strategy but I drank it anyway," said Pope. "And it was a Bud Light so it was more like an isotonic sports drink really."

Unnecessary assault on Bud Light. But hey, at least it wasn't 15 Dr. Peppers!


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