Man dribbling ball from Seattle to Brazil hit by car, dies

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Richard Swanson’s mission was cut short.

The 42-year old planned a journey to dribble a soccer ball from Seattle to Brazil, the host nation of the 2014 World Cup. Swanson planned his arrival to the South American country in time for the big soccer tournament.

He was less than two weeks into his journey when he died after being struck by a car in Oregon, police said. Swanson was struck as he walked on a road on the outskirts of Lincoln City, said Lincoln City Police Sergeant Randy Weaver. His soccer ball was found nearby.

In a Facebook page called “Breakaway Brazil,” Swansons friends mourned him. Swanson used that Facebook page to document his travels.

“It is with a heavy heart to notify you that Richard Swanson passed on this morning,” a post on the Facebook page said. It was signed “Team Richard.” “His team, family, friends, and loved ones will miss him and love him dearly. You made it to Brazil in our hearts, Richard.”

During his travels, Swanson planned on traveling through countries such as Colombia, Nicaragua and Mexico. He asked for donations through the Facebook page to help fund his trip.

He departed from Seattle on May 1. He carried only a sleeping bag in his backpack and sought out people’s help along the way.

In a video posted to YouTube, Swanson explained that he was making the trip after being laid off and having difficulty finding a new job.

He is survived by his two sons, 18 and 22.


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