Duo walks across U.S. to raise suicide awareness

KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, New Mexico --

Army veterans Adam Lingo and Joseph Cox are walking from coast to coast to bring awareness to veteran suicide. Their main goal is to make it from Los Angeles, California, to the Arlington National Cemetery in 22 weeks.

“After losing several of our friends to suicide, with this walk we were looking for some closure, I guess,” said Lingo. “Then we decided to give the walk a little more purpose by completing it in 22 weeks to represent the 22 veterans that that commit suicide every day.”

Lingo and Cox hope their journey will get people out of their homes and comfort zones and out talking to veterans in their communities. Those critical conversations may just save a life.

“We need to get people engaged, to get them talking about the giant elephant in the room. For guys out there to know that they aren't the only ones that are going through tough times,” Cox said. “That's the one thing we hear the most from veterans, ‘I thought I was the only one.’"

They expressed their biggest challenge so far has been balancing the walk and the challenges it presents with the amount of community outreach they want to do along the way.

“We're trying, but being a two-man crew most days starts to wear you out and makes staying on schedule with our walking everyday a challenge,” Lingo said.

Despite the busy schedule, Lingo and Cox have been inspired by what they’ve seen along the way.

“We've seen people engaged with veterans more, and they seem to be having the conversations about suicide, not just in the veteran community, but in general,” Lingo said. “We have met some amazing people along the way.”

Cox and Lingo hope the Albuquerque community will continue to support them on their journey to the Arlington National Cemetery.

“The most important thing, is for you to cheer us on and don't let us quit,” said Lingo and Cox.

You can follow their journey on www.Facebook.com/thewalkoflifeproject