This isn't your average trip across the pond.
Mooney tried three years ago to row a boat from Africa back to the States, but was derailed when his homemade rowboat filled with water off the coast of Senegal.
This time he recruited professional help in building the boat and sponsors for the trip and commenced a six-week intensive training program to physically prepare himself for a second try. Three years later, he's ready to set sail.
"This is a mission I'm grateful for," said Mooney, who lost one brother to the AIDS virus in 1983 and is coping with another HIV-positive sibling.
Mooney raised money Wednesday at an HSBC bank in downtown Brooklyn, where he urged passersby to donate to the AIDS cause. Any money he makes after trip expenses will go directly to AIDS research.
The journey could begin as soon as next week will be documented via a blog Mooney intends to keep during the trip and video footage he will shoot along the way, the Times reported. Mooney estimated the journey could take around 20 weeks.
"Now," he said, "I just have to make it back home."