Nevada man walking one mile for every soldier killed in Iraq

by Jessica Aspiras

Damion Maynard of Idaho is hard to miss on the road, a man dressed in an Army uniform, carrying a ninety pound rucksack and American flag on his back.

It's all a tribute to the men and women who've sacrificed their lives in the war in Iraq.

"I decided a mile wasn't too much because these are lives, and they're people that are from our country," Maynard said.

Since last December, Maynard's walked almost 1,600 miles across the country.

He plans to walk one mile for each soldier that's died in Operation Iraqi Freedom.

"It's not all about the miles that I walk. It's really about the people that I've met who, not that I've just influenced, but who've influenced me," he explained.

Maynard started his journey in his parents home state of Nevada.

He's walked through a total of twelve states ending up most recently in Charlotte, Michigan.

In the months since he's been walking, he's gone through five pairs of shoes and lost about fifteen pounds.

"I'm a little sore now and then. My back's a little sore, but I can deal with that."

He relies on donations from the public and often times sleeps in the woods.

His path isn't planned, rather, he goes wherever people lead him.

"There's times when I won't get out of a town for a week. You know, I get a mile down the road, and somebody else I meet wants to say something or talk, and I think that's what this trip is mainly about."

3,824 is the latest number of casualties reported by the Department of Defense.

That means about 2,200 miles to go, but no matter how high that number may climb, Maynard says he'll keep walking as long as there are soldiers dying overseas.