GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.-
A couple is hiking trails across the country to raise awareness and funds for active military families in need.
Troy Yocum and his wife, Mareike, have made it their personal goal to walk on behalf of military families.
"We walked together 7,880 miles across America twice raising money for military families," said Troy.
In 2010, their hike across America fundraiser raised more than $1.3 million.
"That translated into over 1,700 families through the states who got financial support," said Troy.
Now they are gearing up for their next big fundraiser by going on hikes around the country, including one on the Colorado National Monument, to raise awareness for their cause.
"A lot of people don't realize 18 veterans a day commit suicide and it's been a growing fact for the last three or four years," said Troy.
Troy served in the Iraq war and Mareike says she considers herself one of the lucky ones. She says, mile after mile, there is one thing that keeps her going. "Every story you hear, fallen soldiers, their wives, their families, their kids ... we have met so many of them," she said.
With Memorial Day just a few weeks away, the Yocums say they hope taking part in Active Heroes helps the community remember the true meaning of that day.
"A lot of people think Memorial Day is about barbecues, but in actuality we really need to remember who gave us our freedoms in the first place," Troy said.
In the organization's upcoming Memory Miles fundraiser, supporters can walk, hike, bike or even swim miles to help Active Heroes raise money.
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