Monday, September 9, 2013

Article in the Forsyth Independent Press - August 8 - by Chaun Scott

"Dr. Bob" walks to spread the word of Amity:  
Vietnam Veteran takes his third journey cross country 
with a message of love and community

Forsyth - With the rest of the world racing for the finish line in a blur that runs from one day to the next, one Harlowtown man has decided to take an 1,800 mile walk to Arizona in order to share friendship with those he meets along the way. Physician and Vietnam Veteran, Dr. Robert McNary (Dr. Bob) has set out on a summer journey to talk about "Amity," a word, according to Dr. Bob, not many understand in today's culture. So, on June 30, with his companion Fannie, a red, white and blue flag fashioned with a heart and one star, and a push cart, he began an 1,800 mile trek south to Arizona to spread the word.

"How long should we wait for things to change?" Dr. Bob asked. "Who do we think will make things right, better, wonderful? Must we wait for government or God to act? I'm walking to bring awareness that we need to care for each other, our family, neighbors and fellow citizens. We all belong to the human race."

When we caught up to Dr. Bob in Forsyth, he had already traveled from his hometown of Harlowtown, walked along Montana Highway 12 passing through Melstone, Ingomar and 
miles of country until he arrived in Forsyth where he decided to a nap under a shade tree. After spending a few hours in Forsyth, Dr. Bob packed up his bed-roll and head south towards Colstrip to continue his walk. His plan is to walk to South Dakota to visit his brother and then journey to Arizona where he plans to arrive in the fall.

The journey is nothing new for Dr. Bob; 11 years ago, he set out on a trip that took him from Lavina to New York City. The 2,100 mile trip took five months and four pairs of boots. He wore out the soles of his shoes but not his determination to complete the journey to the feet of Lady Liberty. 

The focus of his first adventure was to share his inspired version of the American Flag and encourage love and good will to those he met. And then last year, he set out on a 900-mile walk from Harlowtown to Reno, Nevada. The trip took him approximately 40 days to complete.

Dr. Bob hopes the symbol that Fannie represents will bring the message of love and goodwill as it waves. He believes that in order to heal, the nation must overcome divisions and love our neighbors and our adversaries, and extend America's goodness and wealth to everyone. "It's time we take care of our neighbors and quit relying so much on the government," said Dr. Bob. "Let's all pitch in again and again. We are never too old or weak to do a good deed and make a difference. Let our little lights shine."

If you see Dr. Bob while you are driving down the highway, stop and say hello. A friendly smile and good conversation is the first step to making a change. "A bottle of cold water is good, too." 

Dr. Bob is the author of Montana Made Me Do It and People Medicine.

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