Close to 200 people marched through Bunker Hills Regional Park October 27th wearing little more than shorts or long underwear. The Nearly Naked Ruck March is a day of fun focused on supporting military veterans through the difficult transition to civilian life.
Participants filled rucksacks with clothes, food and other items for donation and then carried them for 5 or 10 miles through the park.
“I started 23rd veteran four years ago now. I was in the Marine Corps infantry and it was about seven years after combat that I struggled really bad with PTSD,” said 23rd Veteran Executive Director Mike Waldron.
Then, in 2012 the department of veterans affairs published statistics showing 22 veterans were dying by suicide every day.
“23rd Veteran now references someone who has been in that situation, is still here and they’re helping other veterans,” Waldron Said.
The 14-week transition program helps veterans navigate the effects of combat on the mind and find happiness in civilian life.
After four Nearly Naked Ruck Marches in the U.S. this year, 23rd Veteran had raised close to $160,000 at the end of October.
If you'd like to donate or learn about upcoming marches, click here.