Abuse survivor ends 3,000-mile New York to San Francisco run with proposal

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A Florida man started a run in New York in March and just finished Wednesday night in San Francisco. The extreme athlete did it to raise awareness about childhood sexual abuse. (KGO-TV)

A Florida man started a run in New York in March and just finished Wednesday night in San Francisco -- and he ended it with a heartwarming proposal to his girlfriend.

The extreme athlete did it to raise awareness about childhood sexual abuse.

"I have like a billion emotions and a billion things going on right now," said Christian Griffith to a crowd before starting the last three miles of a 3,000-mile journey across the United States.

Griffith has run the equivalent of 119 marathons since marching and went through 12 pairs of sneakers along the way, said Renee Skolaski, the executive director and CEO of Help for Children, a global organization which raises money to prevent and treat child abuse.



Griffith, an ultra-endurance athlete, spent the past five months of his life running with the purpose of helping children, who might be suffering like he did as a boy.

"I'm a victim of childhood sexual abuse. I have to continue to be able to say it," he said.

Griffith helped raise more than $300,000, but his message has reached countless people as he stopped in cities across the U.S. to talk about abuse.

"Even though it happens a long time ago to you, it's the first thing you think about every morning. It's the last thing you think about every night," Griffith said. "I just want people to feel comfortable with the fact that hey, you're not alone, hey, this is something you can talk about if you've been through this."

Supporting Griffith along the way was his baby girl, Kai, who was born during his literal cross-country run and Kai's mother, Lindsay Luna, who was surprised by her own sort of "personal best" at the end of the race.

Griffith crossed the finish line, got down on one knee and proposed with a ring.

"This is a good day. I get him back and I get to marry him," said Luna through tears and a smile.

Much of the money raised by Christian and Help the Children goes to organizations that support at-risk and abused children.

To learn more about Help For Children, visit their website here.

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