Climate change activist making barefoot, cross-country trip is killed

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Mark Baumer was a man on a mission.

The 33-year-old from Providence, Rhode Island, was walking across the country, barefoot, to raise money and awareness about the environment.

But his trek ended tragically over the weekend when he was struck and killed by an SUV while walking along the side of the road in the Florida panhandle.

Baumer left Rhode Island and started his walk in October. He’d just completed the 100th day of his walk, which he documented on several social media sites.

“Climate change is the greatest threat we’ve ever faced as a civilization,” he wrote on his web site. “A lot of scientists agree. I am not a scientist. I am a poet.”

His daily updates were a wry mix of the mundane — where he walked each day, the people he met, what he ate — with bits of his poetry.

“The green carpet where I slept was dry even though it rained most of the night. I could feel an insanity resting deep in my face,” he wrote in his last entry.

Baumer was collecting donations during his walk for the FANG Collective, a Rhode Island-based environmental group. FANG paid tribute to him on its Facebook page.

“Mark was an amazingly compassionate, empathic, humble, joyful, generous, mindful and caring person. He was a talented poet and artist with an ability to tap into the human experience with his work,” FANG said in the post.” As a friend he was always there for us emotionally and did whatever he could do to support the work and vision of FANG.”

Charges are pending against the driver of the SUV who struck Baumer, CNN affiliate WEAR said.

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