A Seattle man trying to dribble a soccer ball 10,000 miles (16,000 kilometers) to Brazil in time for the 2014 World Cup died Tuesday after being hit by a pickup truck on the Oregon Coast.
Police in Lincoln City, Oregon, said 42-year-old Richard Swanson was hit at about 10 a.m. while walking south along US Highway 101 near the city limits. He was declared dead at a local hospital. The driver has not been charged.
Lt. Jerry Palmer said investigators found materials among Swanson’s things listing his website, breakawaybrazil.com.
Swanson set out on the trek to promote the One World Futbol Project, based in Berkeley, California, which donates durable soccer balls to people in developing countries. The company did not immediately respond to a call for comment.
‘We are deeply saddened to learn about Richard’s death,’ Lisa Tarver, chief operating officer of the One World Futbol Project, said in a statement. ‘He was a very inspiring man who in a very short time walked his way into many lives. Our thoughts are with his family.’
Police said Palmer’s soccer ball was recovered.
In an interview with The Daily News newspaper in Longview, Washington, Swanson said he was a private investigator looking for an adventure while between jobs. An avid runner, he picked up soccer just five years ago and played on club teams and rooted for the Seattle Sounders.
‘I felt destined that I should go on this trip,’ he said.
His website said he left Seattle May 1, and the trip would take him through 11 countries before reaching Sao Paolo, Brazil, where the World Cup soccer tournament will be played.
‘It will be a trip of a lifetime where I will push myself further than I ever thought possible,’ he wrote.
The website includes a map showing his route.