Ask any American what Memorial Day means to them, and you’ll most likely receive a myriad of responses: “a 3-day weekend,” “ the start of summer,” “an opportunity to squeeze in a trip.” Unfortunately, too few will cite the true reason for the holiday: remembering and honoring the men and women who lost their lives serving the U.S. armed forces.
After returning home from almost a decade serving in the special operations community, Dallas resident Clint Bruce felt that Memorial Day had been trivialized – reduced to just another 3-day weekend. Attempting to process and reconcile the loss of friends killed in combat, Bruce decided to honor their legacy by setting off on a road march. He pulled out his military pack and filled it with weight: one pound for every person he had lost.
Shortly after, Bruce and fellow veteran Navy SEAL Stephen Holley launched Carry the Load: a nonprofit organization focused on bringing awareness to the true meaning of Memorial Day and raising funds to support veterans and their families. What started as a 20 hour and 11 minute “memorial march” across Dallas turned into a much longer honorary trek across the country. In 2012, Bruce and Holley coordinated an east coast relay, during which relay members walked in 5 mile increments from West Point, New York to Dallas, carrying an American flag to honor lost military service men and women. In 2016, Carry the Load added a west coast element and coordinated relay members who marched from Seattle to Dallas.
What began as a mission to restore the true meaning of Memorial Day expanded to a mission to honor and celebrate all Americans in the sacrificial services: law enforcement, firefighters, rescue personnel, and their families. Beyond coordinating marches, the team at Carry the Load raises funds to support our nation’s veteran heroes and their families, and also works to educate American youth on the significance of the American flag and the impact of the sacrifices of military men and women who lost their lives in service to our country.
Mercury One is a proud partner of organizations like Carry the Load that support our nation’s veteran heroes. We’d like to thank YOU, our donors, for your continued commitment to restoring the human spirit through your support of organizations like these. To learn how you can support Carry the Load and get involved in “Memorial May,” visit their website here.
As always, we gratefully accept any financial gifts in support of Mercury One’s humanitarian fund, which support organizations like Carry the Load. Learn how you can help here.