Stormtrooper Walking 645 Miles to Comic-Con Has An Amazing Story
Image via Twitter
They come from all over the world for Comic-Con, but Kevin Doyle’s 645-mile walk to San Diego is especially amazing.
The San Diego Union-Tribune’s Pam Kragen reports on a 57-year-old man who is honoring his beloved wife’s memory by walking from Petaluma, leaving June 6, to the haven of geek acceptance in San Diego at Comic-Con, all while donning a Stormtrooper costume.
According to the report, Doyle married his wife, Eileen, in 2010, a relationship borne of their mutual affection for “Star Wars” and nerd fare.
Tragedy struck the couple as Kragen writes, “In 2011, she was diagnosed with (pancreatic) cancer and died 13 months later.”
Doyle, an illustrator and photographer, took the loss extremely hard, and is using this epic journey as a memorial to his wife. It also serves as an opportunity to gain back some of the fervor for life he once had.
He explains to Kragen, “In the time since she died, I’ve struggled with how to deal with the loss. I’ve been self-destructive and my art suffered.”
Doyle continues, “Being out here, my mindset is an open book. I hope I find enough healing to be creative and work in that way again.”
ABC 10 News was understandably taken with the story and covered the journey in the following video:
Images of the heroic stormtrooper flooded Twitter as well:
A truly remarkable story gets all the more astounding when you hear that Doyle is not relegating this journey to a personal mission.
He is also helping others, accepting donations for an organization he started. Kragen explains of the brilliant cause: “The walk is raising money for Eileen’s Little Angels, a charity he created to provide comfort bags to children undergoing chemotherapy. He is raising money with an online fundraising campaign on and hopes to create a line of bandannas, coloring books and blankets decorated with Eileen’s artwork.”
You can visit the charity page at the official website.
Now we couldn’t quite track down as of this writing whether Doyle had made it as of yet, but there is evidence that he is extremely close:
Walk the last mile with Kevin Doyle's on his epic walk to @SDCC SD Maritime Museum by 10am today.— Imperial Sands 501st (@ImperialSands) July 9, 2015
We hope he gets there shortly and finds the healing for which he is searching. Comic-Con remains a place of amazing acceptance and joy, so we hope some of the infectious happiness warms like a blanket on the shoulders of a weary traveler.
What we can say for sure is that Doyle has already succeeded in sharing Eileen’s beautiful story.
More by Gabe Zaldivar
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