LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A Fort Benning Ranger is trading in his combat boots for sneakers for the journey of his life. With nearly four years of military service completed, Corporal Cory Smith is running and biking hundreds of miles to help bring awareness to what military personnel face when they leave the service.
The 28-year-old has hung up his uniform for good and donning athletic gear.
"Right now, bout to cross over into the state of Indiana," said Smith. 'It's pretty emotional for me because this is the last state I'm going through."
Smith is on a journey running and biking 20-40 miles a day, his trip documented with pictures on his Facebook page "Run Ranger Run". His adventure began miles away on January 3rd in Columbus, Georgia. His goal is to complete a 565 mile trek to Indianapolis to bring awareness to what military personal face when they leave the service.
"We are having this down sizing of the military and the Dept. Of Defense budget has been way cut by a whole bunch," said Smith. "We are gonna have a lot of individuals we're talking about well over 200,000 in four years coming back home."
Another draw in Indy - his 18-month-old daughter. Supporters say it's fatherhood, teaming up with brotherhood.
"The brotherhood that lasts forever," said Louisville Veteran Joe Strum. "Anybody that's been in the military been in combat been in close quarters with other soldiers, the bond never ends."
Smith started off running but, a stress fracture in his foot has him on a bicycle now. He was escorted by a Jefferson County Sheriff's Deputy and members patriot guard riders over into Indiana.
"I'm an ordinary person but, we are all capable of doing extraordinary things and I'm just hoping that just grabs some people say hey let's go out there and do something for another person," said Smith.
Smith is working with a non-profit organization called "Gallant Few", it's veterans helping other veterans. He will officially be done with his ride on February 8.
Sunday, July 27 2014 11:15 PM EDT2014-07-28 03:15:51 GMT
Authorities say a father was killed and his daughter seriously injured while walking on the sand when a small plane crash landed along Florida's Gulf Coast near Venice Beach.More >>
A father was killed and his 9-year-old daughter critically injured Sunday while walking along a Florida beach when a small plane crash landed on the Gulf Coast only feet from the surf, authorities said.More >>
Monday, July 28 2014 1:54 AM EDT2014-07-28 05:54:28 GMT
Authorities now say 14 people - including a 15-year-old - have been struck by lightning during rare summer thunderstorms that have swept through Southern California, injuring two critically.More >>
A 20-year-old man died Sunday after lightning struck or rattled 13 people at a popular Los Angeles beach and a golfer on Catalina Island during summer thunderstorms that swept through Southern California, authorities said.More >>