VANDALIA – VFW Post 9582 proudly hosted Sterling Deck, United States Army who was deployed in Iraq, and Martin Strange, United States Marine Corps, also deployed in Iraq. Both Veterans are hiking the 1,400 miles of the Buckeye Trail.
Beginning July 4, at Eden Park, Cincinnati, and hiking approximately 12 miles per day to start, Deck and Strange will increase the miles per day every few weeks until they are hiking approximately 17 miles per day. It is a process to increase the strength of the body. The Buckeye Trail Hike will take approximately 90 Days.
WWII veteran Earl Shaffer was the first to hike the entire Appalachian Trail in 1948. Warrior Expedition is inspired by this hike used to “walk off the war.” Executive Director Sean Gobin and fellow Marine Corps veteran Mark Silvers walked the Appalachian Trail in 2012 with two goals. To heal themselves through nature and to raise funds for adaptive vehicles so amputee veterans could also hike. IEDs in Afghanistan sent veterans home with single, double, triple and quadruple amputees. Veterans with PTSD are healing with nature. Hikers must be VFW-eligible.
Warrior Expedition Sponsors provide hikers’ shoes, food including dehydrated meals, and supplies which are given to the hikers when they stop at a VFW Post along the trail. VFW Post 9582 provided transportation, a comfortable bed, and hot meal during the stop.