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Wanted: Appalachian Trail heroes

Now that they have a museum in Pennsylvania, friends and hikers of the Appalachian Trail want to start a Hall of Fame.

Naturally, they are seeking nominees and have received more than 100 names so far. With a March 31 deadline approaching, the Appalachian Trail Museum directors are putting out a last call.

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"The Hall of Fame will recognize those people who have unselfishly devoted their time, energy and resources toward making the Appalachian Trail a national treasure," said Larry Luxenberg, president of the Appalachian Trail Museum Society.

The nominations so far include: Benton MacKaye and Myron Avery, the fathers of the AT; Earl V. Shaffer, the first man to hike from Georgia to Maine and to hike from Maine to Georgia; Emma Rowena "Grandma" Gatewood, the first woman to thru-hike the trail; author Bill Bryson; Virginia hiker hostel operator Carol "Rambunny" Barnes; long-distance champion Dan "Wingfoot" Bruce; Appalachian Trail Conservancy leader Dave Startzell; Ed Garvey, the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club's supervisor of trails; and Gene Espy, the second man to thru-hike the AT.

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The entire list is on the museum website.

"We have been very please with the nominations so far, but we want to make sure we do not miss someone because the nomination is not received on time," said Jim Foster, chairman of the HOF committee.

Nominations can be made online.

The first Hall of Fame class will be inducted at a June 17 banquet at the Allenberry Resort in Boiling Springs, Pa.

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