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Bedford County man walking across the country to raise awareness about divisiveness

David Merritt believes country is too divisive

ROANOKE, Va. – David Merritt is determined to finish what he started.

“I feel like in the last, especially it seems like, 10 to 15 years the divisiveness in our country has just gotten worse and worse and worse," Merritt said.

In 2017, after listening to a radio program while riding in the car with his son, he set out to walk from Virginia Beach to San Diego.

“The discussion on the radio was left-right-left-right-left-right. I turned the radio off and I said to Archer, ‘Son, you know what somebody ought to do? Walk across this country and ask everybody that’ll talk to them what we can do about the divisiveness in our country,’” Merritt explained.

An injury forced him to turn back in Oklahoma City.

“The biggest response I got was that we need to have dialogue and we need to listen to each other,” said Merritt.

On Sunday, three years to the day after he started his attempt at a cross country walk, he'll hit the road at the exact spot in where he stopped.

This week, 10 News was there as he got a head start, talking to people in downtown Roanoke.

“I think the biggest thing we can do is make sure everyone is educated,” said one woman.

“I think we should just be kind to each other. The golden rule comes to mind," said another.

Merritt is confident he’ll be able to finish his journey this time and he’s already thinking about what’s next.

“Financially, if it becomes viable, if we could maybe start a foundation," said Merritt.

A journey of an unknown number of miles that still begins with a single step.

If you’d like to support Merritt, click here.