More than a dozen veterans and their families, from Savannah's chapter of the Active Heroes, marched throughout Savannah for 12 hours Sunday – with ruck sacks on their backs – to raise money and awareness for veterans suffering with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
According to the Department of Veteran Affairs, PTSD affects nearly 30 percent of the more than 800,000 Iraq and Afghanistan War Veterans who have been treated at V.A. Hospitals.
Kit Lowe, a purple Heart recipient who marched with the veterans Sunday, suffers from PTSD.
"I was wounded in Afghanistan August 2009," said Lowe. "I took a gunshot wound to the thigh while pulling a medic off the roof top and trying to give cover fire for Captain Freeman."
Lowe says Events like this are very important, "because the Iraq war is over, Afghanistan is winding down and we're going to have to be taking care of Veterans for the next 70 or 80 years. We need to maintain this level of support for them. If we don't we're going to end up doing what we did to the Vietnam guys."
Lowe and other members of Savannah's Active Heroes chapter marched from the Talmadge down to Dafeen Park, and finished downtown, where they spent time talking about PTSD and other issues Veterans face.
The local Chapter has raised more than $7,600 over the past month. They will be giving that money to the Active Heroes national chapter, which will use it to build a retreat for veterans and their families.
"We want them to understand that there is a group out here that cares," said Veteran Benjamin Kersker. "We do think they're an important part of society, and we don't want thing to happen to [them]."
Kersker says, the important thing, is to not make the same mistakes that were made in previous generations.
"We don't want to ignore our Vets," he said.
The national chapter of Active Heroes has raised over $80,000.
If you are interested in donating to them, you can go to activeheroes.org.
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