Officers do charity cycle ride to mark D-Day

  • July 3, 2014
Officers do charity cycle ride to mark D-Day

Two officers in the US armed forces - one a Gates Cambridge Scholar - are cycling from John O'Groats to Land's End starting this weekend to commemmorate the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

Two officers in the US armed forces are cycling from John O’Groats to Land’s End starting this weekend to commemorate the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

Gates Cambridge Scholar Eric Washkewicz [pictured] and William McGee have both been doing their MPhils at the University of Cambridge and are about to return to their duties with the US military. Will is a second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps and Eric is an Ensign in the US Navy).

Starting on 7th July they will cycle 1,000 miles from Land’s End in the south west of England to John O’Groats in the north east of Scotland. They plan to complete the journey in just nine days, completely on bicycles, and they will be camping every night along the cycle route, away from towns and civilisation. 

They have already raised $4,000 for two charities for wounded veterans – The Travis Manion Foundation (US) and Help for Heroes (UK).

Eric [2013], who has completed an MPhil in Energy Technologies, says: “We came up with this idea on the 70th anniversary of D-Day and were looking for a way to honour those who have gone before us and to give back to those who have sacrificed for us, so we decided on cycling the length of Britain in as short of time as feasible; our shortest day is only 84 miles, and our longest day is 154 miles.”

The two are going to keep a small photo/video journal and upload images to Facebook throughout the trip, while also updating their blog.

After Cambridge, Eric will do one year of training at the Navy Nuclear Power School in the US before reporting to his first boat.

Follow Eric and William on their blog. If you want to donate to both their charities equally, click here. For their fundraising page for the Travis Manion Foundation, click here. Their fundraising page for Help For Heroes is here.

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