A trainer at the Planet Fitness in Portsmouth who was supposed to start a cross country run Thursday in support of two Seacoast charities has been delayed after his equipment was destroyed in a car fire.

Mike Wilson was on track to start a 3,500 mile run from Santa Monica, California to Newburyport in support of  Lucy's Love Bus and Max Love Project, two charities he said "support the overall well-being and emotional healing of children with cancer during a painful and terrifying time."

The gear he needed for the run was destroyed in a car fire in California on Wednesday after his girlfriend Pauline was in a car crash, according to Wilson in a video on his Facebook page.

"Luckily she's okay for the most part. She's banged up a little bit on her leg but nothing too serious.  Long story short the car lit up in flames and everything I needed for the run across America got burnt," Wilson said "I'm going to have to postpone the run a week or so and get all my gear together."

He has created a GoFundMe page to help replace the gear including a tent, sleeping bag, jogging stroller, GoPro Camera, running shoes, portable charger, GPS unit, backpack and clothing.

Wilson, who bears a resemblance to a bearded Forrest Gump when he made his run in the 1993 movie said he stopped by a Bubba Gump Shrimp Company restaurant  and bought a "run forrest run" license plate for the stroller.

Once the run starts Wilson's goal is to raise $10 per mile for the 3,500 miles he'll be running across the country. Donations for the run can made at donations.lucyslovebus.org.

Mike Runs Across America website
Mike Runs Across America website (Dan Alexander, Townsquare Media)

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNH

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