'Walking Marine' passes through Danville en route to DC

Terry Sharpe is walking to DC for fifth time

DANVILLE, Va. – Terry Sharpe is a man on a mission.

"We're bringing awareness to the fact that we're losing 22 veterans every day," Sharpe, known as "The Walking Marine," said.

He set out on May 4 from Stokesdale, North Carolina, and plans to walk 15 miles a day.

Monday, he walked from Danville north through Pittsylvania County.

This is his fifth walk to DC.

"To bring attention, you need to get out and walk; to get the radio stations, TV stations, newspapers. Get people talking; make people aware," said Sharpe.

He's not alone though.

Ken Wilson is walking in memory of his son, an Army veteran, who he lost to suicide four years ago.

"That's 100 percent my motivation," Wilson said. "This is pure inspiration here."

On their way through Danville, Sharpe and Wilson stopped at a convenience store where they were greeted by employees of Telvista, a Danville company that the employees say actively supports efforts to help reduce suicides.

"We at Telvista try to give back to our community; making awareness of suicide prevention," Telvista employee Constance Poindexter explained.

A trio of motorcycle riders also showed their support by riding ahead of Sharpe and Wilson, offering protection and any help Sharpe and Wilson may need.

One of the riders, Stephen Dodson, is a Navy veteran dealing with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and depression from his service during the Gulf War.

"This is something very near and dear to my heart that God led me to be with," said Dodson.

Sharpe says his following on social media is constantly growing, which is why he believes his walks have been successful.

"It's rough on both of us. Our feet, we hurt at the end of the day. But it's worth it if we can just maybe save one," said Sharpe.

The two men plan to get to Altavista by May 10 and Washington, DC by May 26.