Man Traveling To All 417 National Park Sites to Honor Dad

A man working his way across the country on a world record road trip to visit all national parks stopped in Boise on Sunday.

BOISE - A man working his way across the country on a world-record road trip stopped in Boise Sunday. Mikah Meyer is 14 months into a 3-year-long road trip, traveling to all the National Park Service sites in one continuous trip.

It's a trip of lifetime, but it's the reason why Meyer is making this journey that makes it even greater. He is doing it to honor his father, who passed away from cancer when Meyer was just 19.

"It just totally changed my world view as far as teaching me that tomorrow is not guaranteed and we should appreciate time and people while we have them," he said.

He made a goal: When he turned 30 he would do something crazy to show that theory to the world.

"So they could learn it in a way a little less hard than I had to," he said.

That’s how this trip came to life. Meyer is traveling the country in a van he renovated himself. He said his dad loved road trips and it's something they did often growing up.

"He always said if he hadn't been a pastor he would have been a trucker," Meyer said.

But because he was only 19 when his dad passed, he didn't get some of the same experiences his sisters did.

"I have three older sisters and they all got to have him drive them to and from college and every break and they said that was some of their favorite memories with him," he said. "I was 19 when he passed, so I never got that time with him. I never got those road trips with him that my older sisters got. And so for me, these annual trips are a way to feel like he has a chance to teach me the lessons he would have liked to just using the world and everyone I meet as the teachers."

While it's a way to feel connected to his dad, it's also a way to teach others about grief.

"There's no correct way to grieve. You know we have these tropes that we have to wear black forever,” Meyer said. “I think that you can grieve however you need to grieve. To help me process with my dad's loss, I took a road trip because he loved road trips and so for me this is something positive." 

If you would like to follow Meyer on his adventure, check out his blog.

© 2017 KTVB-TV


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