Monday Morning Motivation: Blood Road
May 20, 2019
Blood Road follows the journey of ultra-endurance mountain bike athlete Rebecca Rusch and her Vietnamese riding partner, Huyen Nguyen, as they pedal 1,200 miles along the infamous Ho Chi Minh Trail through the dense jungles of Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. Their goal: to reach the site where Rebecca’s father, a U.S. Air Force pilot, was shot down in Laos more than 40 years earlier. During this poignant voyage of self-discovery, the women push their bodies to the limit, while learning more about the historic ‘Blood Road’ and how the Vietnam War shaped their lives in different ways.
[Caption]. United States Air Force.
Stephen Rusch: June 5th, 1971.
Dear Judy, Sharon and Becky,
Regardless of any opinions I have about this war or any other, it is hard to think about the killing that I will be doing…
[Caption.] Captain Stephen Rusch. Missing in Action. March 7th, 1972.
Rebecca Rusch: My father was shot down in the Vietnam War and ever since his remains were identified I’ve been planning an expedition to ride the entire length of the Ho Chi Minh Trail to search for the place where his plane went down and to discover the circumstances surrounding his death.
Stephen Rusch: I try to rationalize and say that it has to be done, but I can’t see why.
Rebecca Rusch: This journey is so complex. I can’t do it alone.
Huyen Nguyen: Both my uncle and my father experienced the American Resistance War. At that time, America was our enemy.
Rebecca Rusch: I’ll need a riding partner, a support team and a guide.
Expert: From a large area search, there’d be a very small possibility of any evidence of the actual crash itself.
Rebecca Rusch: Unfortunately, finding a 40-year-old crash site is incredibly complicated.
Expert: Apparently, the excavation site would be roughly down here.
Guide: You would have to get permission from the village chief.
Expert: We had to meet the village chief who had the land that the crash site was on.
Huyen Nguyen: One big problem is how to overcome barriers among people so they can understand each other.
Rebecca Rusch: I can’t find a way through!
Stephen Rusch: If anything should happen, please don’t let me die to the children.
Have you seen Blood Road? What did you think of it?