Over the weekend, the Superior VFW assisted the Warrior Hike organization. Two veterans Joshua Brewer from New York and Shawn Murphy from Auburn, Washington are hiking the Arizona Trail from Mexico to Utah as part of outdoor therapy for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and also to bring awareness to veteran issues.
Brewer explained that hiking 20 miles a day really helps to work the bad thoughts out your head. “You are alone with your thoughts,” he said.
Murphy explained that working with the VFWs also helps to connect older veterans from World War II Vietnam and Korea with younger veterans. “They get the opportunity to share their struggles,” he said.
The local Superior Post provided meals and assisted with lodging at the Copper Mountain Motel. “Ravi at the Copper Mountain Motel really helped us out and provided us with a great room for these veterans,” explained VFW Post Commander Gabriel Munoz.
The two started the hike on March 15 at the Mexico border. Along the way the the hiking duo has been aided by local Veterans of Foreign Wars; prior to their stop in Superior, they were supported by VFWs in Tucson and San Manuel. Their next stop will be aided by the VFW in Fountain Hills. Funding for the veteran hikers comes from generous equipment sponsors who provide, top of the line hiking gear for the hikers. The two will complete their journey on the Arizona Trail – National Scenic Trail in April.
At this time there are multiple Warrior Hikes going on throughout America. “There are teams on the Pacific Coast Trail, the Continental Divide Trail and the Ice Age Trail,” explained Murphy. Murphy has hiked several of the national scenic trails and was most impressed with the Arizona Trail and the connector Legends of Superior Trail.