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Man on campaign for smiles hits the road

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POSTED: May 19, 2011 8:00 a.m.
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Eddy Rodriguez waves to passers by in hopes of bringing smiles to as many faces as possible. (Provided)

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“It’s not about the miles, it’s about the smiles.”

That’s the motto of Eddy Rodriguez, a man from the Miami, Fla., area who is walking from his hometown all the way to Washington, D.C.

His route will consist of about 1,050 miles and he’s planning on getting to the nation’s capital sometime in July. He left Miami on March 20, but like he said: “It’s not about the miles, it’s about the smiles.”

“I can average about 15 (miles in a day), and I’ve done as little as five and as many as 22 so far,” Rodriguez said as he walked toward Hwy. 17 in Savannah. “But the more smiles I capture, that’s what it’s all about.”

Bryan County residents may have caught a glimpse of Rodriguez as he passed through Richmond Hill last week. He was the man walking down Hwy. 17, pulling a wagon with a sign that reads “This sign is a good sign” and waving to every car that passed by.

“There was a time in my life when I was really depressed,” Rodriguez said.

It all started about five years ago when he nearly lost his business after a manager mishandled funds. Then his daughter died after a moped accident during a trip to Korea with her husband. And then Rodriguez had a cerebral hemorrhage and was told by doctors he wouldn’t make it through the night.

“I had two tragedies and a mishap in nine months – I just fell into a depression,” he said. “When I discovered how to be happy again, it made me so joyful that I wanted to go out and teach it to as many people as I could.”

Read more in the May 18 edition of the News.

 

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