Southwest Harbor Family Arrive Home after 3 Month Journey Across United States 

A family from Southwest Harbor arrived back home today after a 3 month journey across the United States.As Meghan Hayward tells us they were pushed to their limits and learned a lot about each other along the way.Cars lined the road while relatives and friends waited anxiously for the arrival of the O’Donnell family.” We basically went straight east from San Francisco. And when we hit the Ohio River we started curving Northeast. And we hit Eerie Pennsylvania and so we’ve going through New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and now Maine.”The O’Donnells’ epic bike ride called “Rebecca’s Ride,” started on Memorial Day and came to an end Saturday in Seal Cove.The journey across the country was to help raise money and awareness for type one diabetes.Rebecca O’Donnell has type one diabetes.” I always have to test my blood sugar throughout the day so that’s 4 or 5 finger pricks a day and then I have to keep track of everything I eat and take insulin whenever I eat.”The ride was a challenge for Rebecca because all the exercise caused her blood sugars to drop.But she wants her determination to be a reminder for everyone with diabetes.” You can do anything now, I mean the technology is so great there’s no limitations to what you can do with diabetes.”Deb O’Donnell is Rebecca’s mother and the main reason the family decided to take the journey.She works at Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor and because of the economy, her bosses were looking for ways to save money.Deb decided taking a 3 month leave of absence without pay would be the perfect solution.” So I presented it to Jackson Laboratory and my department head and they thought it was a pretty good idea.”The O’Donnells raised close to $9,000.All the money will go to the lab’s diabetes research programs.Deb says after spending so much time with her family she’s learned a lot about them.” I think the biggest thing for me is that I’ve learned the special gifts my kids and husband have that you don’t see because you don’t see them interacting with people as much as we did.”So what’s next for the O’Donnell family?First enjoying time with their friends and family they haven”t seen for three months and then maybe planning their next family adventure.