‘The Fat Man Walking’


The S.F. Chronicle recently ran a moving article on Steve Vaught, the 39-year-old, 400-pound, San Diego man in the 13th week of a walking quest from San Diego to New York. Blisters on his feet and a rough bout of stomach flu from drinking contaminated water are just a couple of the challenges he’s faced. Vaught is walking to lose weight (50 pounds thus far) and get “back to the person [he] was” before a car accident in which he killed an elderly couple, then spiraled into a long depression, gaining much unwanted, unhealthful weight. Vaught, formerly a “muscular Marine,” states: “I am not happy because I am fat. … I did not make this Web site to complain about it, however. Instead, I am doing something about it, and this site was made to chronicle my story.” Vaught’s wife April assists in posting journal entries. “Steve was distracted yesterday and almost stepped on a rattlesnake,” she writes on July 7. “Of course, he will pay closer attention in the future. … [Today he] signed autographs in the Chevron station and he’s on his way to Ash Fork [Arizona].” You can also look at photos and e-mail Vaught via his site.