August 17, 2015 - 11:30 AM
KAMLOOPS - It’s been close to six months since Edward ‘Fast Eddy’ Dostaler left Kamloops for his run across Canada and back and on Friday, Aug. 14, he crossed the border into Quebec.
Dostaler says he’s completed 6,400 kilometres on his run to raise awareness for breast cancer and Alzheimer's disease and in the process has learned a lot about the country.
“Quebec has been the friendliest place so far. I’ve been offered places to stay, drinks. There’s quite a lot of hospitality going on,” he says, adding many Canadians have donated showers, warm beds and meals. "I’m really proud of Canadians in general for stepping outside of their comfort zones.”
When not drumming up support in the communities he’s passing through, the 26-year-old keeps himself entertained through phone calls with friends, audio books and music. With 'poor' fundraising results, he says the run hasn’t been without its tough days, which he most recently encountered in Ontario.
"It’s more mental than physical. My body is still doing great. It’s hard being out there by yourself. Not knowing where you’re going to sleep can wear on you,” he says.
Thankfully in his time of need, the runner met Rick Hansen — one of his inspirations to do the run — who helped him stay motivated.
Dostaler says he’s met a lot of people along the way, but he’s also encountered plenty of wildlife. He saw two wolves and nine bears, one of which was a sow with two cubs.
“She charged. It was kilometre 678. I will have that imprinted in my mind forever,” he says, adding he scared the bear off with a bear banger.
Beyond the animals, Dostaler says his fear on the run almost came true when he narrowly escaped being hit by a car.
The runner expects to continue his run throughout this winter and plans to turn around and run back to Kamloops after reaching Newfoundland.
To track Fast Eddy's progress, visit his Facebook page. To donate, go to www.fasteddycanada.com.
To contact a reporter for this story, email Glynn Brothen at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 250-319-7494. To contact the editor, email email@example.com or call 250-718-2724.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015