Woman rides horse coast to coast for cancer

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There are hundreds of walks and runs to raise money to try and find a cure for cancer, but this may be a first.

Tracy Delp is on a cross-country ride to raise funds and awareness for the disease, on her horse.

Starting in Washington state on Mother's Day, Delp is passing through Iowa right now, on a 3,000-mile trek to Delaware in honor of her mother who died of cancer in 2008.

"As I get a little further East, people are taking me more seriously because when I left Washington, it was like are you crazy?'' Delp said in an interview with WHO-TV out of Des Moines.

Not crazy.  Just committed. 

Tracy and her horse, Sierra, are able to travel about three miles-per-hour. There are delays along the way. Sierra needed a new horse shoe.  Some days, Tracy and Sierra just need a break to stock up on feed, and re-invigorate.

"There are days you don't know if you can keep going, and then you meet someone who is either a cancer survivor or they've lost someone to cancer," Tracy said.

Along the way, she's relying on the kindness of strangers like Jennifer Daniel who works at a ranch and stables near Marshalltown, Iowa.

Quakerdale Wolfe Ranch is putting the two up for a couple of nights.

"It's huge. I can't imagine. The longest trail ride I've ever been on myself probably was six hours.  I could barely walk when I got done and the horse was exhausted and breathing hard and was a little sore," said Daniel.

Tracy's coast-to-coast ride will take her near the Quad Cities area, when she heads through Clinton, Iowa into Morrison, Illinois in a week or so.

"It's a major milepost for me, a landmark, the Mississippi. It's the last major river I'll have to cross," she said in a phone interview with WQAD-TV.

"The Clinton Police Department may shut down the bridge there so I can cross it," Delp said, "It's amazing."

"You can feel her heart even before you shake her hand," said Daniel of meeting Tracy Delp.  "You can sense that in her that this is a mission for her, and a challenge, and she's rising to the occasion. And we wanted to hep her do that."

A trek  that comes from the heart.  Happy trails.

For more details on Delp's trip and how you can help, go to this website: http:/coast2coastforcancer.webs.com

WHO-TV's Krystle Kacner contributed to this report.