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Parents carry cross from San Diego to Arcadia for school fundraiser

April 6, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Resting on Michelle Kruse's shoulder is a 40-pound wooden cross. A wheel helps ease the burden, but Kruse is part of a group of parents on a mission to walk 120 miles in three days, stopping at four missions along the way.

"My knee hurts, I think I'm about to lose a toe nail!" said parent Daren Deheras. He is pushing through the pain to help raise money for his daughter's school. Immaculate Conception in Monrovia has struggled with enrollment and merged resources with Annunciation Middle School in Arcadia to cut costs.

"I value the Catholic education that my daughter is receiving, as well as the school, and I just want to see it continue," he said.

The group set out on Wendesday from Mission Basilica in San Diego walking 40 miles per day in order to reach Mission San Gabriel on the eve of Good Friday.

"Cars pass by and they honk and give you the thumbs up, so it feels good to have that," said parent Yesel Arvizu.

The support is widespread, from the random drivers to the supporters that awaited them at Mission San Gabriel.

"I'm looking forward to seeing them coming down the street and really show that we appreciate their efforts," said Martha Spangler.

Although they arrived at the mission with blisters and sore joints, they say the trip was worth it.

"We met so many cool people along the way, and it just was a little wake-up call that the world is full of awesome people that really are good-hearted, the journey was excellent," said Kruse.

The group invites anyone who would like to either donate or help carry the cross to join the Saturday on a 10K walk or run starting at 11:30 at the Mission San Gabriel, or for the last 3.1 miles at 1:30 p.m. a Live Oak Park in Temple City. The walk ends at Annunciation School in Arcadia.

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