Man riding horseback across the country to raise money for kids - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

9/27/10

Man riding horseback across the country to raise money for children

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RALLS, TX (KCBD) -

By Tiffany Pelt - email

LUBBOCK, TX – A man on a mission is riding horseback across America to raise money for children needing organ transplants. Phil Dawson and his three horses are resting in Ralls Monday before heading off to continue his one and half year journey.

CEO of the non-profit America Fundraisers, Dawson left Idaho on June 5th and will travel about 7,500 miles by the time he's done riding across the country. "I've traveled now through 25 states," said Dawson. "Gone from Jackson, Montana down through Wyoming, and from Colorado over the largest Mesa in the world."

After traveling down through the Rio Grande and into Texas Dawson arrived in Lubbock and is now in Ralls setting up camp until the morning. "I fund these fundraisers out of pocked. I sold my house after I went through cancer to start this company," said Dawson. "Bless her heart, my wife is so understanding."

His three horses, Layne, Pepper, and Chip keep him company while trying to raise 3 million dollars to help pay for expenses associated with organ transplants. "What I've discovered after having cancer and through an operation, is what happens to these kids sometimes and their families is they go bankrupt and sometimes divorce over the expenses," said Dawson.

Traveling about 100 miles each week, Dawson's journey and given him the chance to meet people across the nation, and come away with some good camp fire stories. "Five feet away coming right at me was timber rattler, ten buttons. He's a hat band for a friend," said Dawson. "For four hours I had a mountain lion tracking me and the horses."

Dawson's next stop is Menard, TX. He'll stay there for about two weeks while Pepper's knee heals from a minor injury.  "I'm looking at cold country. I gotta get south so we can let her heal first of all, and keep me warm second of all," he said.

While strangers open their homes and hearts to Dawson on his journey, he's hoping they'll open their eyes to the families in need."That's what we do, we help these families get through this and help them with the finances."

To make a donation to America Fundraisers or to learn more about Dawson's trek across America (click here).

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