HEADLAND, Al. (WTVY) --- One man is sending a message about an incurable disease. Kenton Bailey is on a long trip. Walking over 300 miles from Savannah to Alabama and now headed to the west coast.
"I’ve wanted to walk across America for like 5-years. I started watching YouTube videos… they advise you to walk for a cause", said Bailey.
Bailey suffers from Hidradenitis Suppuratia. It’s an incurable disease that produces growths on the skin. Initially lumps can develop with some being as big as golfballs. It’s something Bailey’s lived with for over a decade. Initially he said, he thought he had signs, but that didn’t make it any easier when he heard the news that he was H.S. positive.
"I wasn't absolutely surprised when I received my diagnosis but it was still very emotionally disturbing and I was pretty crushed about it", said Bailey.
According the hsfoundation.org, the disease can lead to things like cellulitis, squamos cell carcinoma, MRSA infections or sepsis, all of which are potentially dangerous. And to make matters worse, there is no cure in sight. But Bailey says there needs to be awareness and that's why he's trekking cross country.
"I’m going to keep south for the winter so I stay warm. I’m going to go all the way to Ocean Side, California and so I don't know how long it's going to take but if I rush I’m not going to have a good time".
Bailey says the best thing about his trip is making friends and letting them know about an illness few know about. From Dothan he'll stop in Panama City before turning west toward the Pacific Ocean. All the way helping others understand about H.S.