Hometown Hero: Ivan Stoltzfus

By John Clay

Published 05/08 2014 06:25PM

Updated 05/08 2014 07:10PM

ALTOONA – Ivan Stoltzfus is following his father’s advice of following his dreams, by driving a tractor across the U.S.

The 66-year-old left New Jersey April 26th on a 1948 John Deere tractor, travelling 17 mph across the country to California.

“Little noisier than I’d like, transmission noise, not bad, nothing compared to what troops are doing in the desert,” said Stoltzfus.

His trek across the country is to raise money for wounded warriors.

“My heart goes out to wounded warriors,” said Stoltzfus. “I like to bring awareness, so many adjusting to society. If I can help in a small way. Older I get, I realize I took my freedom for granted.”

Politicians and residents gave him a warm welcome in Altoona Thursday.

“I was happy he detoured and came through Altoona,” said Linda Cassarly of Altoona.

Cassarly helped make Stoltzfus’ visit happen, and she’s thrilled he is trying to raise $1 million. So far Stoltzfus has raised $45,000.

Stoltzfus has a camper trailer with him and expects the journey to take 3 and a half months.

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