Indiana Couple Sets Cracker Barrel Record

Ray and Wilma Yoder have visited every location in the US
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 29, 2017 11:37 AM CDT
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Ray and Wilma Yoder, center.   (Cracker Barrel)

Ray and Wilma Yoder's visit Monday to a new Cracker Barrel restaurant in Tualatin, Ore., was a special one. For one thing, they were greeted with applause and flowers. That's because the Cracker Barrel visit marked not only Ray's 81st birthday, but the couple's completion of "something no one had knowingly ever done before," per USA Today. It was a trip that carried them 5 million miles over 40 years. The goal: visit every single Cracker Barrel in the US. With No. 645 now under their belts, the couple from Goshen, Ind., say their mission is now complete. "Everybody does something ... and we thought we'd do this and it would be fun," says Ray. "For little farm kids, it's been very exciting for us," he adds, per People.

The visits began accidentally in Nashville decades ago, and Ray, who made a living delivering RVs across the country, "wasn't too impressed quite at first," he says, per USA Today. But "it didn't take long before I knew it was my home away from home." The couple eventually decided to visit every Cracker Barrel across 44 states and had been to 600 by 2015. Their mission was then halted when Wilma suffered a brain aneurysm on the road. But after Wilma recovered, the couple's travels resumed, with Cracker Barrel footing the bill to get the couple to their final unvisited location in Tualatin, per KOIN. "I don't like to call it the last one because I think we'll continue to go to some more," Ray tells People. (This couple has been to every county in the lower 48 states.)

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