BURBANK, Calif. – Dave Swuz, an average forty-one-year-old non-professional bike rider with bad knees, has decided to honor Pat Tillman’s legacy, his two ex-Marine brothers, and all veterans by riding his bicycle from San Diego, Calif., to Phoenix, Ariz., a trip of over 400 miles.
Dave is currently training for this long journey in and around the Burbank area. The memorial ride will begin on Dec. 11 on the deck of a United States Aircraft Carrier and finish on Dec. 18 at the University of Phoenix Stadium on game day between the Arizona Cardinals and the Cleveland Browns.
Working with the Pat Tillman Foundation and the Arizona Cardinals, Dave will also shoot a short documentary film about the foundation and his ride. Riding alone, Dave’s only support will be a RV containing his wife Jessica, his dog Mr. Two Bits, and his friend Douglas Maxwell, who will be shooting the documentary.
Dave’s journey will serve two purposes: to raise awareness and to raise money for the Pat Tillman Foundation. In the aftermath of the attacks on 9/11, Pat Tillman selflessly put his NFL career with the Arizona Cardinals on hold to serve his country. In 2004, following his death while serving with the 75th Ranger Regiment in Afghanistan, his family and friends created the Pat Tillman Foundation.
Dave is seeking donations through the foundation’s website as well as corporate sponsors to help cover his expenses in making the ride and shooting the documentary. Donations can be made at http://www.active.com/donate/teamtillman/swuz.
The film will primarily be about the foundation: how it was formed in the wake of Pat’s death, what it does, who runs it, and who benefits from the foundation. It will feature touching stories from people who have benefited from the foundation as well as people who knew Pat Tillman.
Dave’s bicycle journey, the glue for the documentary, serves as a “ticking clock” to the climactic end of the trip that puts the spotlight squarely on Pat Tillman and his foundation.
Dave Swuz strives to raise money and awareness for the Pat Tillman Foundation through donations and corporate sponsorship. The Pat Tillman Foundation is a non-profit 501c(3) organization that invests in veterans and military families through education and community.