With just a folded up map and the open road in front of him, D.C. resident Luigi Laraia set off to ride his bike across the United States. It would be a feat for anybody.
It's even more stunning once you know that Luigi has leukemia and just finished a round of chemotherapy. He rode from D.C. through Ohio and on to Chicago. Past stunning views in Montana at 7,000 feet.
In just 35 days he rode 3,000 miles and made it across the Canadian border and into Vancouver.
"I think I told you when I left that I didn't know whether I was able to even finish one day - let alone the whole ride. I am here in Vancouver with 3000 miles in my legs and I'm just really happy," says Laraia.
Along the way - he blogged and raised money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. He wanted to raise $10,000. He raised $25,000. And he didn't just raise money, he raised hope.
"By Luigi being able to go out there and do this and really say you're not in this alone is truly inspirational," says Laura McDowell of the National Capital Area Chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society
"So many times I thought - 'Ok, let's find an excuse here. With everybody following me here I cannot just say 'I quit'. There were times when I thought, I cannot do this," says Laraia.
He drew strength from friends and family across the miles.
"Whatever you do - whether you just stay in your house or whether you cycle across the world, you need the love and support of people around you," says Laraia.
He even drew support from strangers - just brief encounters along the way.
"It leaves you with a lot of joy. I think that's the main thing that I take away from this: the love from people that I barely know," says Laraia.
He's had plenty of time to do some thinking.
"You have cancer, but at the same time, it's still you. And it's up to you to define your life, to make your life as beautiful as you want. If you set your mind to it, you can do it. It's really up to you. This is what I learned every day riding my bicycle," says Laraia.
He is flying home to D.C. back to work and more chemotherapy. Another mountain he will no doubt conquer.