“The Walking Marine”: Veteran raising awareness for suicide visits Central Virginia

CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WRIC) — A veteran known as ‘The Walking Marine’ visited Central Virginia Thursday.

Terry Sharpe said he would stand outside even if it started raining, because he wouldn’t let something like a little bit of bad weather get in the way of the cause.

ab7d7c323472437b93c348187c51a3d0“I just want to bring awareness to the fact that we are losing 22-plus veterans a day,” Sharpe told 8News Reporter Tracey Smith.

Sharpe has walked from North Carolina to Washington D.C. multiple times, and with every step, he remembers why: He carries with him the names of veterans who have committed suicide.

“Each one has a name on it,” said Sharpe. “There are men and women on here and they all are in their 20s, they’re young ”

So he walks, he holds his flag and his banner in hopes of grabbing someone’s attention.

“Some people just don’t want to think that’s happening,” Sharpe said. “We got people that, it doesn’t register with them.”

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Sharpe is in town this weekend for the Million Veteran March event going on this Saturday in Richmond, joining other veterans like Eric Johnson.

“What we are doing is, we are standing up in a patriotic manner for veterans,” said Eric Johnson with the Million Veteran March Organization.

Johnson said he is proud to have Sharpe be a part of the march because he’s someone who fights for veterans for the right reason.

b476371138bf4bf39f6d95073c3ce16a“This is an individual that lives it, loves it and it’s in his heart,” Johnson said. “He’s not in it for financial gain.”

Sharpe said he doesn’t care if people know his name, as long as they know what he stands for.

“Hopefully, maybe we can save one,” Sharpe said.

To any veterans who think they’re alone, Sharpe has a simple message: “Don’t do it.”

“There’s is plenty of people out there willing to help to get you through it, to talk you out of it, to get you over it,” he said.

To learn more about Sharpe’s mission you can visit his website.

Saturday’s Million Veteran March event will be held at the Virginia War Memorial on Saturday at 10:30 a.m.

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