My last ride – Brett Safran

It seems like just a few days ago we departed from Niagara Falls. Now, here we are, finishing a delicious dinner at First Presbyterian Church of Biloxi, within view of the Gulf. Today was my last day riding with the FCBA team, so I’m seizing the opportunity to blog one last time. Unfortunately, I’m going to miss all the festivities in New Orleans, as well as the final build day. I’ll be flying to Honduras early Thursday morning with a group of students from our “Engineers Without Borders” chapter at the University of Akron. If all goes according to the plan, masterminded by FCBA segment rider Melissa Merrill, we will eventually build a drinking water filtration system for a village of about 4,000 people!

Although I have to leave before the end of the Bike Adventure, I’m still planning on biking all the way to New Orleans… tomorrow! Aaron and Ivan have offered to accompany me on this 85-mile ride to the Big Easy. Our final ride together will mark the end of the “three mustacheketeers”—back in Niagara Falls we each agreed not to shave until we reached New Orleans. I’m wondering if they really want to ride with me, or are just that desperate to shave, and will pull razors out of their jersey pockets when we reach the city limit sign.


We received our third police escort this morning in Mobile, through Bankhead tunnel, which runs under the Mobile River. Later, we took a long pit stop at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Pascagoula, Miss. to wait out some bad weather. While we were there, Dr. Bob treated us to some Little Caesar’s pizza. Thanks so much for lunch!

In other news, Allen experienced his first two flat tires today. Now, hopefully, he’s an expert at changing tubes, because that’s a skill next year’s trip leader should definitely have. Kyle had an encounter with an angry driver that resulted in him being run off the road. His rear tire found some broken glass, buttressing his title for most flat tires. Unfortunately, Matt took a spill today, after a rumble strip jumped out at him!

The Fuller Center Bike Adventure has been awesome…even more so than I imagined! I’ve met some amazing and inspiring people, made a bunch of great new friends, seen a good portion of the country from a whole new perspective–behind handlebars, and will leave with countless memories. I absolutely love the mission of the Fuller Center, and the way they put their beliefs into action. They do an amazing job working with whatever resources are available. The Fuller Center really is transforming lives! I’m proud to have been a part of their ministry, and look forward to getting involved with the local covenant partner back in Ohio! Thanks to everyone who rode with me and/or supported me on this journey…It’s been great! OYEE!!

-“The Gardener”

Brett and the rest of the riders can still use your help reaching their $250,000 goal. Get your donations in before they reach New Orleans!

And join us for our FINALE in New Orleans. There will be much rejoicing with live music and local cuisine. Check out the details here.


One final stop for mail:

Fuller Center Bike Adventure
c/o Mennonite Disaster Services Volunteer Lodging
7520 Hayne Blvd.
New Orleans, La. 70126

*Flat Tire Count*

Current riders:     
Aaron Alaman – 3
Brett Safran – 8
Chris Cosby – 6
Ivan Cunningham – 0
Kyle Halat – 16
Ryan Iafigliola – 11 
Susan Pratt – 2
Allen Slabaugh – 2
Becky Acton – 0
Colleen McKenna – 0
Matthew McKenna – 0
Graham Houston – 1 
Previous Riders:
Abby – 4
Jonny – 0
Leah – 2
Melissa – 3
Olivia – 0
Sarah – 2
Tom – 2
Tony – 0
Mark Benjamin – 0
James Berstein – 0
Steve Carillo – 0
Keith Wishum – 3


  • I’ve enjoyed reading about your adventures. I hope you didn’t have the 107 degrees we had in Little Rock today. We are all so proud of you. God bless you and keep you safe. Lots of love, Aunt Deb

  • GO BRETT AND GO MUSTACHEKETEERS! Haha, you are all CRAZY but doing something great. I’m glad you have company for the first part of your incredible day, Brett. You and Melissa will do great things in Honduras! I’ll be working with the same covenant partner when I get back, see you there! I’m glad the Fuller Center had an impact on you and gave you the opportunity to do this! The whole FCBA team has done great things. Great job everybody, you are almost there!

  • Brett with only 50 days left on the tour I am sure someone will take over the lead in flat tire count 😛

    I think Ryan has a good shot. Maybe I should go take a knife and stab his tire while he ain’t looking 😛 Nah, I ain’t that mean.

  • WOW!!! You did it. What an amazing accomplishment. We are so proud of all of you and your good works. God bless you on your future endeavors. Brett, you look like a mountain man with all that hair on your face.

  • We are thrilled that you made the whole journey! Sorry you couldn’t celebrate the grand finale with the whole group. How nice of Aaron and Ivan to accompany you that last bit. We are proud that you are our nephew/cousin. Your heart is malleable in God’s hand. He will do great things through you. I am reminded of a quote by Bob Pierce, founder of World Vision: "Let my heart be broken by the things that break God’s heart." Love, Aunt Glori


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