Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Rural Iowa man, 35 miles from his workplace, walks; but he is so well known, he gets lots of rides

How far would you go to do what it takes to survive? In an attempt to save money, a rural Iowa man forgoes his car and walks to work. No big deal? He's 35 miles from his place of employment, so he leaves home more than seven hours before his scheduled shift to get to work on time, Kyle Munson reports for The Des Moines Register. (Register photo)

Simoff typically walks fours per day, Munson writes. He sometimes gets picked up after an hour or two, but prepares for longer walks, sometimes six hours or longer. He told Munson, "First of all, when you got a family, and you've got a job you've got to be able to support your family. And you've got to keep your job—the most two important things I can think of."

While Simoff's experience in similar to that of a Detroit man whose 21-mile walk to and from work recently made national headlines, the difference is that Simoff is walking in rural country, which makes him more visible than someone walking in an urban setting, and it has made people more likely to offer rides, Munson writes: "Simoff has cultivated a diverse patchwork of road friends in his on-and-off decade as southern Iowa's epic walker." Simoff's wife Renee told the reporter, "He can't go into the grocery store without seeing one of them."

Decatur County Sheriff Herbert Muir said everyone in the county knows Simoff, and some of his deputies have even given him rides, Munson writes. Muir told Munson, "There's no danger about him or anything. He's personable. He's not been in trouble. He just walks." Simoff lives in Davis City and works at the Lakeside Casino in Osceola. (Read more)

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