Veterans Crossing America by Bicycle, Hand Cycle and Recumbent
From May 28 to July 28, 2012, a team of injured military veterans rode bicycles, hand cycles and recumbent cycles from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean. Hosted by the leading not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization, World T.E.A.M. Sports, the 2012 Sea to Shining Sea ride honored the courage of our military and the strength of the American spirit. Since 14 of the 16 participants who rode the full route are disabled, the ride provided a dramatic example that disabled Americans can lead productive lives and accomplish remarkable athletic feats.
The team of riders followed a cross-country route through 14 states and the District of Columbia, from San Francisco, California to Virginia Beach, Virginia. Sea to Shining Sea riders left San Francisco on May 28, passed through the Napa Valley and rode into the rugged Sierra Nevada Mountains into Nevada at Carson City. Crossing the deserts of Nevada and Utah, through Salt Lake City, the riders then climbed over the high Rocky Mountains in Colorado to Denver, Colorado Springs and Pueblo. Heading east through the Arkansas River valley into Kansas, the ride continued through Missouri and St. Louis for the Fourth of July. Following the celebrations in the heart of America, the riders headed east through southern Illinois and Indiana to Cincinnati, Ohio and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. From Pittsburgh, the group rode east through Pennsylvania and Maryland to Washington DC. After a stop in Washington, the ride headed south to Richmond, Virginia to the conclusion in Virginia Beach, Virginia on July 28. In all, the riders covered nearly 4,000 miles from coast to coast.
At many major cities that the route crosses, community and media events were held to publicize the event. The ride stopped at selected American military bases along the way, and connected with local communities of disabled persons in towns and cities it traveled through.
Sponsorship support for the participating wounded warriors allowed the riders to participate at no cost, including air transportation to the start and from the finish, lodging and meals. The ride was fully supported through sponsorship support.
Funds raised in excess of the ride’s expenses were applied to other inclusive athletic events World T.E.A.M. Sports manages for Americans who are disabled.
Learn More About Our 2012 Sea to Shining Sea Ride
For more details about our 2012 Sea to Shining Sea ride, presented by State Farm, visit our official ride website.
Explore our 2012 World T.E.A.M. Sports Sea to Shining Sea Flickr photographic galleries.
2012 Sea to Shining Sea Sponsors
The 2012 Sea to Shining Sea ride was supported through generous sponsorships by State Farm, American Portfolios, MWV, Dominion, the Semper Fi Foundation, the USO, BNY – Mellon, General Electric, GM Fleet and Commercial, Brown Shoe Company and Famous Footwear, Energizer Holdings, Altria, EnerSys, Occidental Petroleum, Magaschoni Apparel, Penske Truck Rental, AR Capital, Vedder Price, the El Pomar Foundation, Recycle for People, and George Puskar.
Upcoming Sea to Shining Sea Rides
Information regarding upcoming Sea to Shining Sea rides from World T.E.A.M. Sports will be posted to this site as rides are announced. Veterans with disabilities with an interest in participating may send a note of interest to World T.E.A.M. Sports. They are also encouraged to participate in other events from the organization, such as the Face of America ride, and to watch for the official announcement for applications. Our next ride is anticipated in 2015.
Supporters Praise the 2012 Sea to Shining Sea Ride
“Honoring our fellow Americans who have sacrificed for us was the least anyone should do. They are the ones we need to thank both now and in the future, and I was happy to be a small part of a big journey. They all made me proud, including those of you who helped make this ride become a reality.”
- Jim Noland, Pittsburgh
“What a huge achievement for anyone to pedal that many miles through all of the obstacles and potential obstacles that were thrown in the way, but for this group, it’s definitely that much more impressive! I’m sorry that I did not get to spend anytime with the Sea To Shining Sea folks on the road, but I felt that I was living vicariously through Bill, Lou and Emily and the stories they were sharing.”
- Leigh Edmonds, Mobile USO Program Manager
“It was our honor and privilege to be involved with this very worthy, important and challenging ride. Our team had a great reaction and felt that it was an important point that we do all that we could to make the team welcome while in our region.”
- Ned Masse, MWV
“It was our pleasure to help in any way…..we got so much out of the Sea to Shining Sea visit!”
- Kate Henry, b2 and company exponential results, inc
“We were pleased and proud to have the participants of the 2012 Sea to Shining Sea stay at the St. Regis Deer Valley.”
- Michael J. Zaccaro, St. Regis, Park City
“I understand it was a great ride and I’m glad we were able to play a part in your success.”
- John I. Pray, Jr., Executive Vice President and Chief of Staff, USO
Participants Support the Sea to Shining Sea Ride
“Elated! Self-Confident! Camaraderie! Conditioning! These are a few words that come to mind when I reflect the summer of 2010 after riding a hand cycle and upright bicycle on the World T.E.A.M. Sports, Sea to Shining Sea adventure across America. There is absolutely NO way we could have done this without State Farm’s generosity. The support provided by State Farm allowed me the peace of mind highly needed to focus on the abilities left in my body after suffering paraplegia, traumatic brain injury and post traumatic stress after my Apache helicopter crash in Afghanistan. Thank you, State Farm and World T.E.A.M. Sports.”
- Stuart Contant, US Army (Ret.), 2010 Sea to Shining Sea Ride participant
“The World T.E.A.M. Sports Sea to Shining Sea ride symbolized for me facing the impossible, which many of us on the team could relate to in our lives. As the miles passed, the ‘impossible’ became the ‘very possible’ and the focus switched from changing our lives to changing the lives of others.”
- Kevin Sullivan, US Air Force (Ret.), 2010 Sea to Shining Sea Ride participant
“World T.E.A.M. Sports has given me an opportunity to re-identify myself. People don’t look at me as just an injured veteran anymore. They now see me as the veteran that rode her hand cycle across the country and climbed a mountain in Nepal. These experiences have allowed me to see myself as a stronger more complete person. I am not just surviving after being injured, I am truly living! Thank you World T.E.A.M. Sports!!! I’m ready! What’s next?”
- Nicolette Maroulis, US Navy (Ret.), 2010 Sea to Shining Sea Ride and 2010 Soldiers to the Summit participant
“On May 21, 2010, a small group of cyclists gathered at dusk at the edge of San Francisco Bay. It was cold and blowy, with scattered rain. The wind kicked up flecks of foam in the Bay. The Golden Gate Bridge loomed above in the gray sky. The only note of color was the bright yellow of the foul-weather jackets the riders wore as they leaned into the wind, struggling across the sand toward the water.
“Curious onlookers stopped and noticed that several of the riders were being carried down to water’s edge, while others pushed their hand bikes and recumbents into the frigid foam. The riders provoking this curiosity were taking the first step in a journey of discovery of America, and of the power within themselves.”
- read more of Paul Bremer‘s story, “The 2010 Sea to Shining Sea WTS Ride,” published in the March 2011 edition of the Potomac Pedalers Touring Club Pedal Patter newsletter
Explore our 2012 Sea to Shining Sea event website or view videos for more information regarding the 2010 ride, sponsored by State Farm.
“Two Shining Seas” Documentary
Explore the documentary “Two Shining Seas” of the 2010 Sea to Shining Sea ride by Austin Smithard.
Sea to Shining Sea Books
Shining Seas – by Mike Claver, Rachael Rosen, and Jeanna Buck, with Abby Bergakker, November, 2012. 108 pages, softbound. Illustrated. Experience the 2012 Sea to Shining Sea ride from staff members who traveled across the continent with 14 disabled veterans and 2 pilots for blind riders. From California to Virginia, the team faced record high temperatures, high mountains, deserts, and other challenges as they rode bicycles, hand cycles and recumbents. Limited copies are available for purchase from World T.E.A.M. Sports.
From Sea to Shining Sea – by Paul Bremer, September, 2011. E-book. 270 pages. Illustrated. Complete report of the 2010 Sea to Shining Sea cross-country journey. Beginning in California and ending in Virginia two months later, the team of 15 disabled veterans, accompanied with a few able-bodied riders such as Bremer, joined together as a team for their journey.
Sea to Shining 2010 Sea Video Album