" In 2012, the department of Veteran affairs released a report indicating that 22 veterans die by suicide a day. This is tragic and needs our attention. These are people that are committing their lives to protect our freedom. A freedom we believe our nation has lost sight of. We cannot take this liberty for granted...we are burning and destroying our own flags, walking past our heroes as if they are invisible. Turn off the Superman and Ironman movies and look around you. Shake their hand, look them in the eye and say thank you. Pay for their lunch..take a moment to listen to their story. " - Alex Garcia
On April 22nd, 2016, Alive cubed founder Alex Garcia, climbed the equivalent of Mt. Everest to bring awareness to the number 22, but more importantly to show our veterans across our nation that we love them.
He climbed hwy 80, a steep road leading to Mt. Mitchell a total of 22 times over a period of 33 hours. 257.7 miles, 38,866 ft of elevation gain (Mt. Everest is 29,026 ft) No sleep, rode his bicycle throughout the rain and night to show that love wins. The feat has been documented by media, but most importantly has started an initiative to love our vets. #love22 was born.
During this ride, Alex faced mountains, 22 of them to be exact. "Truly the only the way I was able to keep climbing was because of the amazing support I had behind me. Feeding me, following me, motivating me, keeping me warm. I had never felt love quite like that. While everything in me wanted to quit, cease the pain, I couldn't let my support crew down, I had to keep going"
At the end of the day, this seemingly impossible feat was only made possible by the support, love, and compassion from friends, family, and strangers
Love 22 is a challenge to Americans to reach out to 22 veterans between April 22nd and Veteran's Day and show compassion, love, honor and respect to our veterans.
Love one Today, Save One Tomorrow - #love22
Ways to to this:
1. Say Thank you, ultimately the single greatest thing we can do is to say thank you
2. Pay it forward, pay for a meal, pay for their coffee include a note of thanks
3. Visit a VA hospital, connect with a Vet send a care package
4. Listen to their story, take a vet out for lunch or coffee and listen to their story, write about it, many times these stories die with them
5. Give them priority, your in a long line, ask them to take your place in line
6. Help a Widow of a soldier, mow their yard, help around the house
7. If you run a business, provide a discount
8. Sponsor an event, or dedicate your personal event to a vet (A run for Tom )
"No Act of Kindness, however small, is ever wasted " - Aesop
NEVER UNDERSTIMATE THE POWER OF LOVE
LOVE IS A VERB, ACTION IS NECESSARY. Show Veterans you care !