Soldiers marching from Tampa to the panhandle of Florida

Raising money for fallen comrades

One by one they strapped on their backpacks. Sixteen air commandos preparing to put one foot in front of the other, starting what's called a ruck march.


"You put weight in a back pack and you put it on your back and you just walk," Meagan Freeman said. She is part of the Air Commando Association.


These soldiers will march from MacDill Air Force Base to Hurlburt Field, an Air Force base just west of Fort Walton Beach, Florida. The trip is expected to take five days or 120 hours.


"Our route will take us up highway 41, up through Brooksville and Land O' Lakes; Highway 19 and then up to highway 98," John Trostle said. He is also a member of the Air Commando Association.


The marchers will tackle their 450 mile trek to Hurlburt Field by splitting up into four teams. Each one of those teams will take turns marching 12 miles until they reach their destination.


"So we's always have someone on the road 24 hours a day," Trostle said.


The journey is to honor their fallen comrades and show support emotionally and financially to their families. "It's a way to help get funds to the families, to the children, to the wives, the mothers that are left behind," Freeman said.


Megan Freeman is doing her first ruck. Having served in the Air Force for the past eight years, she knows what it's like to lose someone close to you. She lost a few friends while they were serving overseas.


"You feel so helpless," Freeman said. "You don't know what to do. You don't know how to help."


With all the money raised from the march going to families of the fallen, Freeman decided "rucking" was the best way to show her support.


"I'm not doing this for me. I'm not doing it for myself, and it's a larger cause," she said. "When you think about how large that cause is, one foot in front of the other. Picking them up and putting them down. That's what keeps it going."


You can follow their journey by going to their Facebook page:

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