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Arizona desert

Scottsdale man walking across U.S. to raise funds, awareness for St. Joseph’s Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation

 2 minute read time

(PHOENIX, Ariz. – April 1, 2022) – After doctors at Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center told him he needed a new liver, Kevin Ericksteen decided to go for a walk – across the country.

Ericksteen, 47, set out from Santa Monica pier on Feb. 1 and reached his home in Scottsdale on March 10. After taking a few weeks to rest and restock supplies, he plans to resume his journey on Thursday, April 1. Ericksteen is walking to raise funds for St. Joseph’s Center for Liver Disease and Transplantation and to raise awareness for organ donation during National Donate Life Month this April.

In 2021, Ericksteen was diagnosed with liver disease and told he would need a transplant. Under the care of doctors at St. Joseph’s, his health began to improve after he changed his diet and started a workout regimen. Though Ericksteen has permanent liver damage, he is no longer on the waiting list for a transplant.

“Barring any unforeseeable events, as long as I’m healthy, I’ll just march on and try to raise a little bit of money for St. Joseph’s,” says Ericksteen, who owns Terroir Wine Pub in Scottsdale. “I feel like they saved my life.”

Ericksteen’s planned route will avoid major cities and meander some 2,900 total miles through New Mexico, Oklahoma, Mississippi and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. He hopes to complete the trek in Charleston, S.C., by mid-September. His journey will be tracked online at and on Instagram (@theuncomfortablewalk).

“I really thought that I was on my way out and asked for a few good months,” Ericksteen says. “I’m going to spend them doing what I want to do and hopefully there will be many, many more after that. I’ve been told I’m crazy a million times, but if you actually think about it, it’s a great way to see the country.”

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Publish date: 

Friday, April 01, 2022

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Carmelle Malkovich, External Communications Director

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