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Story and Photos by Breeana Greenberg

Thirty-four-year-old U.S. Army veteran Alex Seling was welcomed by an electrified crowd at Doheny State Beach in Dana Point on Monday afternoon, Jan. 31, after completing his more than 4,000-mile hike from Cape Henlopen State Park in Delaware.

After his arrival, Seling expressed sadness that his 13-month journey had come to an end. When asked by supporters to take his sunglasses off for pictures, he responded that he was using them to hide his misty eyes.

The former Army medic with the 25th Infantry Division, 2-27 Wolfhounds dedicated his latest hike through the Southern Route of the American Discovery Trail to Warrior Expeditions and Mission 22.

As of Tuesday morning, Feb. 1, Seling had raised $7,635 for the two organizations, which help veterans struggling with their mental health. Warrior Expeditions supports veterans looking to go on long-distance hiking, biking, or kayaking trips. Mission 22 offers mental health support and resources for post-traumatic stress.

Seling arrived in Dana Point to a police escort that accompanied him through the final stretch of his hike. While rounding the final bend of the bike trail that enters the beach, supporters greeted Seling with signs welcoming and congratulating him on completing the journey.

Also awaiting Seling were friends who had supplied plenty of beer and pizza to celebrate the end of the hike, which he started in December 2020. By the time Seling hit the shoreline, he had hiked 4,592.6 miles.

Breeana Greenberg is the city reporter for the Dana Point Times. She graduated from Chapman University with a bachelor of arts degree in English. Before joining Picket Fence Media, she worked as a freelance reporter with the Laguna Beach Independent. Breeana can be reached by email at bgreenberg@picketfencemedia.com

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