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August 20, 2014     Hays Free Press
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Page 4C COMMUNITY Hays Free Press August 20, 2014 lmberl man to take pilgrimage the poor BY ASHLEY HUGHES ashley@haysnewsdispatch.corn a Wimberley man's Oth birthday will e spent during his 500-mile walk around the Camino de Santiago, an ancient Christian pilgrim- age route in northern Spain. Thomas Hall is prepar- ing to take this walk of a lifetime to raise money for Food fbr the Poor's mission to bring clean water for those in need. He is hoping to raise enough money to build water wells that could provide water to more than 8,000 people in Haiti. "This has been on my mind a very long time since the '90s, but I had to raise a family first," Hall said. His now grown children will be participating with him on this adventure. Three of his four children, twin sons Patrick and Conor, age 25, and daugh- ter Maura, age 24, will be helping to ring in his birthday during the trek. His wife plans on joining them toward the end of the walk. "I wanted to do some- thing not for my own grati- fication, but for someone and something else," Hall said. This isn't Hall's first time participating in such an event. His father died of cancer when Hall was just 15 years old. During his grieving process, he and some friends went on a retreat to learn about a fundraiser sponsored by the American Freedom from Hunger Foundation Right, siblings (left to right) Patrick, Maura and Conor Hall will accompany their father Thomas (above) for his 500-mile journey along the Camino de Santiago in northern Spain. and participated in a 26- mile walkathon the next year. Hall has been train- ing for this walk by going out on long walks dur- ing mornings before the heat of the day strikes. He sometimes carries his pack with 20 pounds of gear on him to get him accus- tomed to what his big walk will be like. Hall lives in River Mountain Ranch and can walk 15 miles without crossing major highways. He also swims laps at Blue Hole to keep his body in good physical condition. "My colleagues and pawners were very gener- ous with me to give me what I call my maternity leave," Hall said. The Leo J. Dowd Foun- dation will match the first $5,000 Hall raises. The money Hall makes will be donated to Food For The Poor and two other charities. He hopes to raise $30,000. "Frankly, I'm surprised I haven't found anyone who has done this in this wa " Hall said. "To prove that I'm actually walking every- where I have to get my little pilgrim's passport stamped "1 wanted to do something not for my own gratification, but for someone and something else." - Thomas Hall along the way." The pilgrim's passport will be stamped each day at the hostel to verify to the Pilgrim's Office in Santiago that the pilgrim walked the entire official route. The pilgrim must show the cre- dential to the authorities at the end of the pilgrimage to obtain the certificate of completion. To help Hall reach his fundraising visit www. FoodForThePoor.org/ camino or http://pilgrims- purpose, weeb ly com/ Thyme Iiii!iiiili i ii!ili!i!i!i!ii iiiiiiiiiiiii iiii!~ii' iiiii!i!i!i!iii iiiiiii!i!iiiil iii!i!iiiiiiii! ~ii!iiii!iii!iii ~ililili~iiiiii i!iliiiiiii!i!ii iiiiiii!iii!i!i~ ..... iiii iiii!iiiii!iiiii iliiiiiii!ii!i iiiiiiiii!iiiii Subscribe to the Hays Free Press and wake up to Hays County's #I news source every Wednesday. Email Suzanne at paper@haysfreepress.com or call 512-268-7862 for more information. Name iiiii!i!iiiiiii iiiiiiii!i!i!iil !!iiiiiiiiiii!i ~iiiiiii~iii iiiiiiii!i!i!iii iiiiiiiiiiiiiiii !iiiiiiiiiiii iiii!iiiiiiil iiiiii!iiiiiii!i ~iiiiiiii!ii iilliiiii~iiii! iiiii iiiii!i{i{i!iii{ i!i!i!:iiiiiiii iiii!iiiiiiiiiii Address Zip Email Home Phone No F_I Check Enclosed [~1 Charge credit card Credit Card # Exp Date Signature / 3# Security Code Amount $ ~iiiiiiiiii!i f;:~i:iii~iiii!~iiiil :lii iil i1: i