By Paul Gable, Communications Director For Route For The Brave
TERRE HAUTE — David Roth, a 20-plus year veteran of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and the Chairman of the Board for Helping Hands For Freedom, a non-profit organization that helps military families dealing with death, loss and deployment, completed a five-day "test walk" across Indiana in preparation for next year's Route For the Brave walk across America.
Roth began his walk in Richmond and walked along U.S. 40, arriving Wednesday in Terre Haute — a distance of 144 miles.
Route For The Brave will begin on April 28, 2016 in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and travel across U.S. 40 to San Francisco with a goal of raising funds for the construction of a retreat house.
"My stepson, Matt Coleman, is being deployed for the fifth time and the idea came about that way. Nothing breaks your heart more than trying to reintroduce children to their parent when they come back from being deployed. I am 40-something and in the grind of my life. There is a desire and a push to do one big adventure and what better way than to do this," Roth said.
With the "test walk" complete, Roth said he sees momentum building for next year's event.
"Each day, we get a phone call from a person wanting to donate or do an event for us. Obviously for me, success will be completing the trip, but it won't stop there. I want to build the house that gives military families an opportunity to connect. When we get that first family and give them a place of retreat, that will be amazing. That's everything right there," he said.
For more information on Route the Brave, visit www.routeforthebrave.org and for more information on Helping Hands For Freedom, visit www.helpinghandsforfreedom.org.