Editor’s Note: The latest blog post from Ivan Stoltzfus and his “Across America for Wounded Heroes 2016” fundraising trip on a tractor that started from his Honey Brook farm on Oct. 15, 2016. Ivan left Sarasota, Florida, on Feb. 19 on the second leg of his journey from Honey Brook to the West Coast and the Pacific Ocean.

By Ivan StoltzfusMarch 14 2017 Moody to Crawford, TX 40 miles.

One picture is of the gentleman with a white beard that brought me dinner last night.

I was about to leave this morning, happen to look down and saw my one tire was about flat so I pumped it up. I figured I will wait till at the camp ground to work on it.

Didn’t have as far to go up to Crawford, again had nice shoulders to run on, came into a town named McGregor, decided to top my gas tank off. A police officer named Officer Bowers came in and walked up and said I want to thank you for what you are doing.

It’s always encouraging and he said they are working with veterans with PTSD and also your first responders.

We got to talking and I mention I am going to be staying in Crawford tonight and would love to meet President Bush but I knew that would be a long shot.

He told me to stop in at city counsel and talk with the Mayor or the Police Chief so I putted up another 10 miles and came in town and park along the road and walk into city council. The clerk was very helpful and said the Mayor would be the one to talk to.

They said he comes out some weekends to relax and is working on his new book and it’s hard to get a hold of him but I should take a drive out to his ranch. It’s out in the country from Crawford about 9 miles. They did warn me you can’t see much; they have the 1,500 acre ranch well hid.

I putted out this country road, very narrow but I was in my glory, just went out passed all the ranches, sheep farms. On the way out only had two cars come by.

I got out to where it turns in and a sign said “dead end, do not enter” and I knew I was at the right place. So I am debating could I go part way and ask for forgiveness at the main gate and barrier.

I started in about half way and stop. I could see the gate keeper because he stepped out of his little building and stared at me. I got out of the tractor, had some fliers with me and walk up to him. It is a well secure gate. I walked up and explain what I was doing and ask if he would see that President Bush would get these fliers. This gentlemen was very nice, asked about our mission and said he will see that George Bush gets my fliers.

While I was there, 4 different vehicles came and went, had these electric barriers that would come down to let a car in or out.

He thanked me and when I got there, I saw I could turn around this side of the gate, where I was I had to back up. I ask him if I could come on down and turn around here but he thought it would be best I wouldn’t. I saw then I didn’t want to push it.

I ask him if he was in the military or a veteran; he had plain clothes on and he said he wasn’t but works for the government. From what he said, sounds like he was an agent of some kind protecting the President.

I was told when President Bush comes, he goes the route I took and a string of cars fly back through to his Ranch.

I putted back and set up at the city RV park. I got a call from Van D. Massirer has a farm east of Crawford and wanted to take me along to WACO to a antique tractor club meeting tonight.

I would of enjoyed that but he didn’t expect to get back till late and I had my tires to fix so we decided to meet in the morning 10 miles north of here for coffee at 9 some of the club members will be coming.

Jumped on Smiley and headed to the next town 7 miles south for a grocery store, Crawford doesn’t have one. Came back and work on the tire, another plug.

Would of loved to have gone to their tractor monthly meeting but people keep stopping by and donating and it’s hard for me to say no but I have to learn to do that when I am very tired.

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