Australian Guy Dressed As a Stormtrooper Walks Across His Continent For a Good Cause
TK-421 Why Aren't You At Your Post?
The man above is Paul Jacob French, a native Australian who has committed himself to walking across his home continent in the name of charity. Namely, the Starlight Children’s Foundation, which aims to make the lives of ill children and their families more manageable and uplifting. His Gump-like journey will take him from Perth to Sydney, a total of 5,000 km or over 3,100 miles. After the jump, more on his mission and a couple more silly pictures.
French, who hails from Melbourne, Victoria, hopes to raise $50,000 by the end of his journey, which will take him across the 850-mile Nullarbor Plain, which is best known for nearly killing the first Europeans who tried to cross it as well as its lack of rain and trees. (Fun fact: It is the world’s largest single piece of limestone.) He aims to walk 25 miles per day, 5 days a week and reach Sydney by Christmas. From his mission page at Everyday Hero (where you can donate):
Over the course of the trek I will cross 4 states and cover approximately 5000km in modified stormtrooper armour. The plan for now is to push a lightweight buggy with needed supplies an average distance of 35-40km for 5 days a week until the trek is complete.
But why the Stormtrooper costume? Besides it being attention-getting, why is French doing this dressed as a Stormtrooper? Well, French is known to some as TK 6283 — he is a member of the 501st Legion, an “all-volunteer organization” that seeks to spread the good word about Star Wars and everything it entails. They work with a number of charities including the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the Special Olympics. Basically a group of costumed do-gooders, which isn’t what comes to mind when you think of Stormtroopers, but what’s wrong with some good, clean fun between Imperial foot soldiers?
From the 501st Legion homepage:
To prepare for this monumental journey, [French] has already completed the RunMelb Half-Marathon while wearing his Stormtrooper armor, and has been training regularly to complete the cross-country trip …
(Try not to imagine the “Lonely Man” music from The Incredible Hulk right now. I dare you.)