Carry Forward 5K in Jacksonville honors veterans

2,000 people supported wounded veterans & families

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Wounded Warrior Project "Put the Mission in Motion" this Veterans Day weekend, and on Saturday, more than 2,000 people participated in its Carry Forward 5K in Jacksonville.

It was the second year for the run, and it was the last of four Carry Foward events in the fall. According to Wounded Warrior Project, events were held in San Diego, Nashville and San Antonio. There were more than 7,000 participants combined through all four events.

Wounded Warrior Project
Wounded Warrior Project

Gabriel George and Laura Root are just two of the people who have been helped by Wounded Warrior Project. Both attended the 5K in 2018.

"I just hope that we can get more veterans involved in things like this," Root said.

People running in the 5K carry either a flag, a weight of up to 100 pounds or even another person.

"The biggest part of participating, for me, is to see the look on other people's faces," George said. "Wearing the logo for Wounded Warrior Project is about carrying someone else forward."

George and Root also participate in adaptive sports supported by Wounded Warrior Project. Both were medically retired from their military service and have found recreation and purpose, and many have recovered their lives.

"It's a life source to me. It's staying active and staying involved with adaptive sports. It changed my life," George said. "I tell people all the time from three years ago, I was just sitting on the couch doing nothing and dealing with pain all the time with no outlook on the future."

George was injured in a motorcycle accident. Root has muscular dystrophy. Both have an inspiring story and want to see others like them thrive.

"Last year, I lost 12 friends to drug interactions and PTSD. There isn't a day that goes by that I'm not thinking of them," Root said. "I hope to engage as many people as possible that need these opportunities and hopefully make their lives better."

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