Man skates across country for child hunger awareness


SPRINGFIELD, IL (WAND) - Mike Lempko, a New Yorker, flew to San Francisco, California and chose to go back home on roller blades. He's been on the road since May 28. He stopped in Springfield for a pit stop where WAND caught up with him. Carrying nothing but a backpack, Lempko said he's living his best life with a pair of roller blades. 

"I'm having the time of my life out here," Lempko said. "And I'm getting to see some of the coolest parts of America that most people don't see." 

Nevada, Colorado and Missouri are few states he's passed through. This journey is something he said he's been wanting to do since 2016. The 26-year-old said it would have been a life regret if he didn't take action. Skating across the country isn't easy. Lempko recalled the time he traveled in Kansas; skating in 90 degree weather. 

"[Kansas] nearly broke me," Lempko said. 

However, that's the least of his problems compared to the people he's fighting for. While he skates back home, his goal is to bring awareness to child hunger. Lempko is raising money for 'No Kid Hungry', a national campaign that works on ways to feed children before and after school, and during the summer. 

"One in six kids is hungry, which is kind of hard to believe when you realize how comfortable we live," Lempko said. 

So far, he's already raised $14,000, just $1,000 short of his goal. While he has hundreds of miles left to skate, Lempko hopes his journey will inspire another good Samaritan. 

"Go ask some one who looks like they could need some help or looks like they're struggling," Lempko suggested. "Lend a hand to them. You don't know how much they'll appreciate it." 

If you are interested in helping Lempko reach $15,000, click here. He said he's expecting to be back in the East Coast by Labor Day. 

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