ST. CLOUD - A group of people from all over the state gathered in St. Cloud to bring awareness to Veteran Suicide.

The group of Veterans and families showed up at Lake George Saturday around 10:00 a.m. to start their eight mile walk through St. Cloud. The walk is designed to bring awareness to the alarming rate of  23 veterans committing  suicide everyday.

Mike Mills is one the organizers of the ruck. Mills says they are there to bring awareness to the community, but also to let veterans know they have help if they need it.

"We're here to bring awareness to Veterans suicide. We're always on call. If there is a veteran struggling, a family member struggling they can reach out. That's the goal to have them reach out instead of becoming a statistic."

Asking for help isn't always easy. Some believe that if your strong it means you never ask for help, but Mills says it's just the opposite.

"It takes a strong person to ask for help. We need to realize we need to ask for the help that is there for us. Talk to somebody, call somebody, we're always here for you."

This was the first ruck in Central Minnesota by Operation: 23 to Zero. The group hopes to have more events to help bring awareness. Many Veterans have used the group to connect to others with similar experiences. People from St. Cloud, Delano, Pine City and the Twin Cities have all connected by using Operation: 23 - Zero.

If you are a Veteran or family member looking for help Mills says don't hesitate to contact Mike or Operation:23-Zero MN Central.

Justin LaBounty WJON
Justin LaBounty WJON

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