Marine Walked 810 miles around Lake Michigan for A Good Cause
Travis Snyder embarked on quite the journey at the end of August when he decided to walk around Lake Michigan, all 810 miles of shoreline.
Travis decided to walk around Lake Michigan for Veteran Suicide Awareness. According to Mission 22, which is the non-profit who Travis was walking as an Ambassador for, over 20 veterans a day take their own lives, reported by The Department of Veteran Affairs. Mission 22 helps get veterans the treatment they need, so suicide doesn't seem like the only answer.
Travis, who was a Marine from 2013-2018, according to WZZM, started off in Manistee State Park then traveled north around the lake through Mackinaw City, the over into Wisconsin and down through Illinois before making the bottom round in Indiana and then back through Michigan, ending where it all started, 49 days earlier.
He says on his Facebook page Veteran Suicide Awareness: Travis Hikes Around Lake Michigan, that he started off his journey quietly,
"My original intent was to camp out each night, and find my way around the Big Lake. Heck, I even sold my Jeep just to fund this endeavor, lol. All I wanted was to put in the work, and complete this mission that was put on my heart. But so many good-hearted people reached out, ready to support this mission in their own way, and I’m beyond thankful for it.".
From the start, Travis used the Facebook page to give daily updates, which is cool to see his journey and realize that even though he started off quietly, it wasn't long before his FB page had over 3,000 likes and people were joining him along the journey and spreading the word of the awareness he was trying to get out there.
An "Aww" moment on the walk: On his walk from St. Joseph to Holland, at the end of September, he came across a kitten that was left overnight in a thunderstorm, so he scooped the kitten up and adopted it. In case you're wondering, no he didn't walk from Holland to Manistee with a kitten, he had a friend cat-sit for him, although you can see the kitten made it to the finish line too!
This is one of those moments when you can see (just look at the picture below) that if you follow what's in your heart, the universe will make sure it's heard/seen.
I want to end this story with a true quote from Travis' post below,
"If you’re struggling with Suicide today, I want you to know that you have a purpose, and reason for living this life, this gift that you’ve been given. You’re needed, you’re loved, and you belong here with me. With us."
The National Suicide Prevention Hotline is staffed 24-hours a day, if you ever want or need to talk to someone, 1-800-273-8255. You can even chat with someone right now, online with LIFELINE CHAT.