WHS grad canoes entire Mississippi River - Republic-Times | News

WHS grad canoes entire Mississippi River

By on November 20, 2018 at 3:08 pm

Waterloo High School graduate Erik Elsea, who now lives in Cape Coral, Fla., canoed the entire Mississippi River this year to raise money for a charity called ShelterBox. (submitted photo)

Waterloo High School graduate Erik Elsea fulfilled a childhood dream this year when he canoed down the entire Mississippi River. 

His trip also raised money for ShelterBox, an international disaster relief charity that provides temporary shelter and life saving supplies to displaced families.

“ShelterBox has been a big passion of mine for years,” said Elsea, who now lives in Cape Coral, Fla. “So the ability to tie in a trip that I’ve always wanted to do, my childhood dream, and use that to raise awareness and money for ShelterBox, which is a passion of mine, was just a great opportunity.”

The trip also served to commemorate the Flood of 1993, which Elsea volunteered during. 

The 1996 Waterloo High School graduate spent 90 days on the river, canoeing 2,552 miles. His trip started July 7 at Coffee Pot Landing in Minnesota and ended Oct. 5 when he reached the Gulf of Mexico. 

Elsea said he could have finished sooner, but he wanted to spend extra time sightseeing. He also wanted to take the same time it takes a drop of rain to travel the entire river.

During his trip, Elsea, a past president of his local Rotary club, spoke to 63 Rotary clubs, including in Waterloo and Red Bud. 

ShelterBox is Rotary’s international partner for disaster relief. 

Elsea, who made the trip as a 40th birthday present to himself, said it exceeded his expectations…>>> 

Read the rest of the story in the November 21, 2018, newspaper.

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James Moss