The Carolinas CAN Ruck for Autism

A Ruck Across the Carolinas to benefit Champion Autism Network


Slappy, the 25-lb slamball, will be traveling with his carrier Richard Sexton for 750 miles across the Carolinas in 30 days.


WHY? To raise funds for Champion Autism Network, an organization committed to building sensory-friendly experiences for children on the spectrum and their families. Your contributions directly help families in need.

Gratefully acknowledging our sponsors, Rowan Rock and Timber and Broadstep

Thank you!

In 2016, Richard carried Slappy during the entire Myrtle Beach marathon to raise funds for CAN. He hopes to repeat this challenge for 30 days straight in the Carolinas CAN Ruck for Autism, carrying Slappy in a ruck sack instead of on his back.

About Champion Autism Network (CAN)

Champion Autism Network, Inc. (CAN) is a nonprofit autism awareness organization based in Surfside Beach, South Carolina. CAN was founded in 2012 by Becky Large, a business professional and mother of a child on the spectrum. CAN’s Mission Statement is "To create a world-wide network of autism champions by partnering with businesses, local nonprofits and individuals with autism and their families to create and ensure inclusive communities where all people CAN happily live, work and play."

You can make a donation directly to Champion Autism Network by visiting this page

About Richard

Richard Sexton has run almost 100 marathons and ultra-marathons and completed six iron-distance triathalons with more to come. But he is also inspired by those who win the daily race with all sorts of challenges, be they physical, cognitive, or behavioral. Some struggles are more obvious than others, but through his friendship with Becky, his personal experience as a substitute EC teacher, and learning from his son Daniel, Richard believes that families with challenges need to be supported. The NC Ruck For Autism is a fund-raiser to help CAN, and in turn, help these families. Richard has a regular job, a wonderful family, good friends, and a mostly normal life. And a parrot.

I N S P I R A T I O N S

Becky Large

Becky is the founder of Champion Autism Network and is a person of unbridled optimism and energy. She has been an inspiration for many through her family's journey with Autism and leadership of CAN, and I'm privileged to call her a friend.

The Iron Cowboy

Say what you want about James Lawrence, but this guy has an indomitable will to keep going despite all odds. Best known for doing 50 iron-distance triathalons in 50 states in 50 days, the Iron Cowboy executed an amazing feat.

Charlie Engle

As an athlete and an inspiration, I feel honored to call Charlie a compadre. He has conquered mountains, deserts and his own internal demons with grace, humor and humility. Best known for Running the Sahara, Charlie will be joining us on a few legs of our jaunt!

Teachers & Caregivers

As a substitute teacher to Cabarrus County schools, I am continually amazed at the commitment, patience, and love shown by teachers and caregivers to EC students. They are amazing!

The Nimblewill Nomad

MJ Eberhart is a legend among the thru-hiker community for having trekked, unsupported, the entire length of the eastern seaboard from Florida through to Quebec, and beyond. He never quits.

Coach Jeff

Jeff is the founder of 4 Circle Coaching and "300" Gym, where my wife and I train. Besides being a good friend for many years, he is an inspiration in his attempt to through-hike the AT after just having both knees replaced.

My Family

We've been through a LOT these last few years, from welcoming Daniel into his forever-family 5 years ago to an all-inclusive bout with Covid-19. But we hang together in love, always.