United States 3 May: Guin, Alabama - New Albany, Mississippi

Crossing Into Prayerful Mississippi

Mayor Max Maddox and his assistant, Rebecca Markham, receive the Peace Torch at Guin City Hall this morning.

They very generously gave us T-shirts, information and postcards from the town.

In the City Hall they have a historical display of photos of the town from the early 1900's. In 1974 a huge tornado flattened the whole town and everything had to be rebuilt.

An older version of the Peace Run team and vehicle?

Vrishaketu starts the early morning run in Guin with the Torch in one hand and a 'to go' breakfast in the other.

Along the way he meets a very curious character who wants to get the Torch. Turns out it was Elvis Presley, the 'King of Rock and Roll' who was born in Tupelo.

He runs off down the tree lined sidewalks happily on his way.

Justin and Ben, two local workers who were installing fiber optics lines, were happy to hold the Torch with us. Justin then told Ben, "I told you we were going to have a really good day today."

Arpan takes over the Torch as we run down the highway with lots of trees to keep us company.

Kaspars is third in the rotation of a three person team who are carrying the Torch into Mississippi.

An early morning run with cooler weather and lots of nature is always a welcomed blessing.

Along the way we meet more locals who are surprised to see us but love to hold the Torch as they offer their wishes and goodwill. This friendly farmer told us, "What you are doing is a good thing."

This local trucker advised us to stay safe.

We finally made it to the great state of Mississippi.

We were all pretty excited to enter Mississippi!

Meanwhile, the guys were quite hot by the time our 30 mile stretch of running was done around noon. No chance of ice on this bridge.

The first team finished the long morning run in the attractive town of Amory, Mississippi. A large group of people gathered in Frisco Park for the National Day of Prayer.

Mayor Brad Blalock greeted us there and kindly offered his goodwill and kind words as we shared the Peace Torch with him.

Many others came up to hold the Torch to offer prayers and wishes for peace and harmony, including this local reporter who was covering this event today.

Families and friends alike were kind enough to meet us and offer their goodwill and prayers for peace.

Young and old, all seemed to be very sincere in their prayers and wishes.

We are grateful for the many sincere prayers which were offered by these wonderful peace loving people from Amory, Hadley and other towns as well.

These women were in tears, soulful tears of gratitude and joy as they shared their blessing with us.

Steven Warren, an aspiring runner from Amory, greets us warmly and offers his kind words and peaceful smile with the Peace Torch.

R.D. (Brother) Cline, who organized this prayer vigil in Amory shares a prayer with our Torch. He also organizes the 'Prayer Warriors' who say prayers for peace and protection in Amory as well as many cities in the U.S. We are grateful for his invitation to attend the prayer ceremony here and bring the Peace Torch for the prayerful people to share.

The rest of the team were already out of the road for the afternoon run out of Amory.

Virangini caught up with some old friends, Margot and her son Russell.

Glenda was kind enough to stop her car in New Albany when she saw the word 'Peace' on our vehicle as we were running through her town. She offered very encouraging words and her own prayer with the Torch.

Rupasi braves the heat and rough road ahead.

Zuzka from the Czech Republic is ready to start her leg of the run.

Meanwhile the rest of the team went to Tupelo to meet with Mayor Jason Shelton who kindly offered a Proclamation for the Peace Run.

We offered our Certificate of Appreciation for welcoming us to this very nice city, the city where Elvis Presley was born.

Many sweet and colorful locals were kind enough to share the Torch and offer wishes and prayers for peace.

Their smiles were sincere and peaceful.

These two sisters were happy to hold the Torch together.

An impressive view of Tupelo City Hall.

Svetlana, from Russia, just happened to run past after our ceremony with the Mayor.

Svetlana now has to catch up to her teammates a couple of miles down the road.

In the late afternoon half of the team was welcomed to the beautiful Courtyard Marriott Hotel.

Kimberly, one of the Managers, receives our Certificate of Appreciation for being so helpful and generous in their offering of two very spacious and comfortable rooms.

The other half of the team was welcomed to the beautiful Fairfield Inn and Suties in Tupelo. A big thank you to Yanique, on the left, and especially to the super enthusiastic Demetra who kindly organized the nights accommodation for the whole team!!

The evening Manager, Steven, at the Texas Roadhouse Restaurant in Tupelo kindly treated our tired and hungry team to a very delicious and healthy meal. The waiters and waitresses along with the rest of the staff were very welcoming, friendly and supportive. The atmosphere also was very exciting and energetic as some of the waitresses would dance to a very special song every time it played on the system in the dining hall. We are extremely grateful to establishments like this one who help, encourage and feed us so that we can carry this Peace Torch to share with thousands of people around North America.

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