Carrying the load for those who can't

- The seventh annual Carry the Load brought together thousands of people Sunday in Uptown Dallas

More than 470 teams strapped on their backpacks and marched along the Katy Trail in honor of fallen service members.

"It's really to remember all of our fallen heroes, the ones that didn't come back from war," said Michael Clark, a Marine Corps veteran.

They marched in memory of friends, like Sergeant Jason Arwine, who served in the Marines and was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease, passing away just last year.

"Bright smile, always came in with a great work ethic, never complained. He truly advocated for veterans and people who had Parkinson's," said Clark.

They marched for family members, carrying pictures and names of those lost, including the names of the five Dallas officers killed on July 7th, on their backpacks.

"Just enough load to carry for my brother's fallen brothers. And I've got a photograph of my father in the back who was a police officer that passed away in the line of duty," said Morris Brossette who marched.

And they marched for those who served alongside them.

"I was a third special forces group as a green beret, and there's 30 names embroidered on the center console of my truck. That's why I come here every year," said John Wayne Walding, a U.S. Army Special Forces veteran.

The money raised by each team will go to help 25 different organizations that support veterans, like 22 Killed.

"22 Killed raises awareness of the fact that on average 20-22 veterans die by suicide everyday. That money is going to not only better the lives of our warriors and their families, but give them a purpose to not only live, but live well," said Jacob Schnick, Director of 22 Killed.

So far, the event has raised more than $1.7 million dollars for veterans and their families to help continue carrying the load.

"We all have to do our part, whether you give money, whether you walk, whether you help veterans. Everything you do, this is part of the fabric of our country," said Freddy Vaca who marched.

Since it started in 2011, Carry the Load  has raised more than $13.7 million dollars to support veterans.

The march ends Memorial Day at 3 p.m.

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