EASTLAND, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – In today’s society, most are still unaware that there are 22 American veterans who die by suicide every single day.
In order to battle and change this statistic, one man is choosing to raise awareness for all who suffer from PTSD by doing what he loves best, running.
3,333 miles, that’s Kyle Killinger’s total goal to reach from the West coast to the East coast.
“It’s been a very amazing experience so far. I knew this was what I needed but now that I’m actually getting to do it, it’s like better than what I thought I needed,” said Killinger.
The veteran himself joined the Marines following in his best friend’s footsteps, someone he greatly respected.
“I was young and dumb, and I got out early because I thought I knew better than everybody.”
But for the past 25 years, running has always been his thing.
“I’ve been holding up pretty good physically. I had problems there for a couple of weeks with my feet and then my knees and then it goes away.”
Hitting his halfway mark here in Eastland, Texas, Killinger tells us the best part about the run is the things you’ll never see from a car.
“When you’re taking it in at 5,6,7 miles an hour versus in a car, you can take things in. It’s been more of a therapeutic journey for myself as well, but I get that on top of everything.”
Killinger tells us he’s trying to tackle the fact that some see no other alternative to end their pain than by taking their own life.
“I feel better for doing this for myself and these people feel better for finding out what I’m doing it for because I’m not doing it for myself.”
And although awareness is really just the first step, Killinger believes it’s an important step.
“Find what your therapy is and use it. Help yourself and help other people if you can.”
During Killinger’s run, he will be updating his followers with pictures, videos, and interviews via Facebook and other social media platforms.
If you would like to help in supporting Kyle and the veteran community, click here.