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Paddling from the Source to the Sea

Jamie Buckley
In the early morning fog on Lake Irving in Minnesota, Day 4 of his trip.
Credit WVIK News / WVIK News
Buckley (holding paddle) with members of the RI Rotary Club. They're indicating we're "this close" to eradicating polio in the world.

A man from Maryland is kayaking down the Mississippi River - to challenge himself, and to challenge local Rotary clubs to help eradicate polio. Nearly two months after he started in Minnesota, Jamie Buckley stopped in the Quad Cities this week to talk about his experiences, and the international campaign, End Polio Now. 

Several years ago, having never hiked or camped, Buckley hiked the Appalachian Trail, then the Pacific Crest Trail. Now, with very little prior kayaking experience, he's taken on the Mississippi River.  

He says his biggest challenge so far has been the weather - high winds and heavy rain.
After two months, and with two months still to go, Buckley says his trip has been a humbling experience that's changed his life.

You realize what we take for granted - hot showers, running water, and beds.

He's talked about Rotary's End Polio Now campaign to 7 clubs so far, and will probably meet with at least 8 more before reaching the Gulf of Mexico - his goal is October 24th which is World Polio Day. 

He's scheduled to resume paddling Wednesday morning, launching at Credit Island.