Veteran Walking and Cycling Across Nation to Help Fight PTSD

July 6, 2018 3:36 pm Last Updated: July 6, 2018 3:36 pm

A veteran has traveled by foot and by bike thousands of miles across the nation to raise public awareness about PTSD, according to Fox 31.

Eli Smith, who served in the Army as a tank gunner in South Korea, now has the mission of traveling 14,000 miles around the U.S., which was inspired by his friends’ death.

“It really messed me up. I didn’t know why I felt like I had failed him as a battle buddy, and just wanted to do something about it,” Smith said in an interview with Fox 31.

Smith started his journey from Florida and has traveled thousands of miles on foot and by bike.

“My mission is to raise awareness for PTSD and veteran suicide. It is to educate the public and help veterans at the same time,” Smith said.

He faces not only physical challenge, but also threats from gangs and wild animals.

“Someone trying to kidnap me, a gang in San Diego having a bounty on my head, getting hit by a car, heat stroke, rattlesnakes, I should be dead 10 times over,” he said.

Despite the danger, Smith said the journey is all worth it.