Brothers complete 3,000-mile cross-country trek for restaurant workers
SAN FRANCISCO - For two brothers, the adventure of a lifetime ended on San Francisco's Market Street Tuesday.
They took the last steps of a cross-country trek across America, on foot.
It's been five months of really hard work and imagining this moment," said Louis Ardine.
Louis Ardine and his older brother, Aiden, set out from their home state of New Jersey on May 1. That's more than five months and 3,000 miles ago.
Each of them had been furloughed from their bartending jobs on the Jersey Shore because of COVID.
They say they saw the financial hardships so many restaurant workers were facing and wanted to do something to help.
They decided to walk from coast to coast to raise money and awareness of the problem.
"The uncertainty of whether or not your job would exist was felt throughout our community. We were inspired by that," said Louis.
Along the way, they raised about $60,000 for the Restaurant Workers Community Foundation and they even picked up Verizon as a sponsor.
"We walked over mountains, crossed rivers, crossed deserts. We slept under the stars in our tent. It was so cool to go an old-fashioned adventure," said Aiden.
The brothers faced 100-degree heat. They say the weather was a constant challenge.
"It basically rained on us until we got to Chicago. I learned a lot about watching the sky," said Louis.
Louis and Aiden plan on writing a book together about the adventure. But first, they intend to celebrate.