A 76-year-old Okotokian is planning the trip of a lifetime.

John Stitsen intends to trek from Okotoks to Edmonton on a mobility scooter.

The road trip will act as a fundraiser for Sacred Heart Church of the First Peoples, which holds significance to Stitsen for several reasons.

Chief among them is the fact that his wife Theresa volunteered at the church's food program for a few years in the 1980s.

She passed away sleeping by his side in December of 1997.

"It's going to be 25 years coming up this year. She was only 43 years old. This is an opportunity for me to do my last road trip in her honour, and her daughter is going to be meeting me in Edmonton when I arrive there on the 24th."

Stitsen also determined that his paternal grandparents would likely have taken part in the construction of the church and attended it after its opening in 1913.

He's planning to time his arrival in Edmonton with the arrival of Pope Francis, who is visiting Canada from July 24-29.

In 1984, Stitsen camped out with his wife and three stepchildren for Pope John Paull II's visit to Edmonton, and he recalls being interviewed by a reporter from the Edmonton Journal and chronicling his efforts.

The Sacred Heart Church of the First Peoples also holds significance to Stitsen as a Canadian.

It's the first dedicated First Nations, Métis, and Inuit national parish in Canada, which was declared in 1991.

"To have the Indigenous people have a Catholic church as their place of worship, with their own way of celebrating mass with smudging and a tipi built inside the church that's up and part of the reconstruction that's going on, somebody should be celebrating this in my humble opinion," says Stitsen.

As for the trip itself, he's planning to tackle it over the course of a week.

He'll be leaving on July 17, aiming to arrive on July 24.

His vehicle of choice is a Boomerbeast2, an off-road scooter with lithium batteries that should last him each of his daily distance goals.

Stitsen's route will have him spend the first night in Cochrane, then proceeding to Sundre, then Rocky Mountain House, Red Deer, Ponoka, Wetaskiwin, and up to Leduc where he'd spend his last night before arriving in Edmonton.

It's not the fastest route, but he's also planned a few stops to visit old friends and places of significance to him.

He'll also have a few friends and members of the Knight of Columbus riding along with him.

For Stitsen, the trip will connect to countless threads from throughout his life and will contribute to a positive future for the church and its congregation.

He's also hoping it will lift the spirits of fellow Albertans and counteract the division he's noticed in recent years.

"Every opportunity we've had to watch demonstrations now have all been protests of some kind going on. Doesn't matter who or what or whatever, the last two years have produced a litany of protests of all kinds. Whether anybody likes it or not, this is a celebration for me. I'm going to do my very best to try and make it work."

Donations can be sent via the church's website, with donors asked to include the word "scooter" in the optional message to signify their donation as part of Stitsen's fundraiser.