WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Carry the Load National Relay stopped in Wichita on Friday, just two days before Memorial Day.
Carry the Load is a nonprofit that started in 2011 with a mission to restore the true meaning of the holiday. It provides active ways for Americans to connect to the sacrifices made by the military, veterans and first responders.
“We want to keep their memories alive for those that have paid the ultimate price with their life, if they’ve made that sacrifice and even for those that serve every day or maybe have retired or are no longer in service but also their family members,” said Michael Williamson, a cyclist on the route.
This year, the 32-day relay covers 20,000 miles. It consists of five routes covering 48 states. Teams have been walking or cycling since April 27.
They do it to honor and remember those who died for U.S. freedom. Veterans and active military members often come out and ruck up for the miles-long journey.
“I try to support various causes for veterans. I’m a veteran myself, and I just try to get involved with as many causes as I can,” said Ryan McEachern, Carry the Load attendee.
The route will end in Dallas on Memorial Day. Kansas is part of the Midwest route.
“In Dallas, there will be a big celebration. We’ll have veterans come, and there will be a march, and they’re able to again show their support and gratitude for what our nation’s heroes are doing and have done,” Williamson said.
Participants who came out could sign a flag that will also make its way to Texas.
“They can sign the name of the loved one they may be carrying, or family members, and that flag makes it to Dallas, and we’re able to walk around when we do that march,” Williamson added.
To donate to the mission, click here. The money goes toward our nation’s heroes and their family members.