Palm Beach County Fire Rescue driver Melissa Watson trains for 40+ mile hike across Grand Canyon

In an effort to raise money for a charity

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. - Melissa Watson is accustomed to blazing a trail, whether as Palm Beach County Fire Rescue's first female driver, or one of the very few women to make the two day, forty-plus mile hike across the Grand Canyon, all in an effort to raise money for charity.

"ProjectAthena.org. It raises money for women that have overcome things like breast cancer or degenerative diseases, and it helps them try and get back to an active lifestyle," said Watson.

Melissa's walk was inspired by her own recovery from a nearly crippling knee injury.

"I had serious knee surgery a few years back. I was told I'd never run again and was on crutches for a couple of months. Since then I've written two hiking guide books, and I'm out here dragging a tire," said Watson.

Now, she's tired of just sitting on the sidelines, and is devoting three days a week to her training, even if it is a drag.

"If I can inspire anyone to get out and do something, to see that they can do, anything they want to do, if they put their mind to it...then more power to them," said Watson.

This time next week, Melissa will be on the second day of her trip, making her way back across the Grand Canyon.

Print this article Back to Top

Comments