It’s that time of year again for the annual Marine Corps Marathon and despite the threat of some really bad weather, the race as of now is scheduled to go on. While there will be a number of inspirational stories coming out of this year’s race, one runner will most definitely stand out from the crowd.
This isn’t how most people will gear up for Sunday’s marathon, but Travis Taylor isn’t most people. He has five degrees, is working on a second PHD and has worked for the Defense Department and NASA. Travis is also the star of the National Geographic Channel’s Rocket City Rednecks and will be wearing a 39-pound full body armor suit when the race starts.
“I wanted to prove we could build a body armor suit and prove if some 44-year-old geek from north Alabama can run in it, then young strapping marines can wear something like that,” says Taylor.
He designed and built the suit and his mom helped put it together in the hopes of creating better protection for U.S. troops.
The current body armor saves lives, but IED’s still take limbs. Taylor hopes to stop that.
“My big brother is an E9 in the Air Force. He’s going back for his fourth deployment to Afghanistan in January. I definitely want to do whatever I can to make sure he comes home safely,” says Taylor.
“They may have the only body armor suit made by a concerned mother,” says Charles “Daddy” Taylor, his father.
His show’s cameras were there as the body armor survived explosions and held up against gun fire, but can it last 26.2 miles?
“I’m hoping I can hold this for the entire marathon,” says Taylor.