Kevin Doyle just marched 645-miles, dressed up as a Star Wars Stormtrooper, from San Francisco to the Comic-Con Convention in San Diego. His reason for doing so will warm your heart and moisten your eyes.
Doyle, a 57-year-old illustrator and photographer from Minnesota, and his wife, Eileen, were huge Star Wars fans. The couple met through the 501st Legion, a Star Wars costume guild. Doyle proposed to her in 2009, dressed like Darth Vader. The couple married in 2010 and R2D2 was their ring bearer.
Unfortunately, their happiness was short-lived. Eileen died in November of 2012 from pancreatic cancer, and Doyle told The San Diego Union-Tribune that he’s struggled to cope with her death ever since. He quit his job, which caused him to lose his house.
So Doyle decided to do a 3-day walk in his Stromtrooper costume for a breast cancer non-profit in Minnesota. Afterwards, he came up with the idea to make the trek from San Fran to San Diego for the Comic Con which was 501 miles away. His route along the ocean turned into a beautiful 645 mile memorial journey by foot.
After he decided to travel to Petaluma, Calif. to check out a Star Wars museum, it occurred to him that he might also like to visit Comic-Con in San Diego. When Google Maps told him that San Francisco and San Diego were 501 miles apart—a callback to the 501st Legion—he decided it was fate. Doyle’s route along the coast, not along the highway, makes it 645 miles.
And in what sounds much like what happens to uncrewed runners during The Vol State 500K, strangers along the route were gratuitous and gifted Doyle with food, water, hugs, and encouragement. Doyle has been self-supported pushing a cart along his journey. He was even gifted with a hotel stay at the convention along with a 4-day Comic Con pass.
Doyle also was able to do a lot of good along his journey as he raised funds for a charity he started called Eileen’s Little Angels that provided kids going through chemo with coloring books, toys, and fun stuff (donate HERE).
You can also follow or read more about his epic journey from The Dark Side on his Twitter HERE.