SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Carry the Load, a non-profit, is honoring military heroes and first responders through a relay as part of their mission to restore the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Carry the Load is traveling across New England as a way to honor and thank military heroes and first responders for all they do. The non-profit organization’s mission is to bring Americans together to participate in honoring and remembering the sacrifices that military, veterans, first responders and their families made for the country.

The organization says their goal is to raise $2.25 million for May. They raised over $38 million since 2011 and 94 to 96 percent of the money goes to nonprofit partners who help provide vital resources like counseling and job support for veterans and their families.

Matthew Eveland, the medic for the Carry the Load relay says it’s important to honor these heroes for the sacrifices they make for the country. “I’ve always been told that we die twice, once when our heart stops and once when our name is last said and we are keeping people’s names alive, who paid the ultimate price,” said Eveland.

Carry the Load says the average person travels between 10 and 15 miles as part of the relay. The organization will also be meeting with surviving family members and gold star family members,
who have lost a loved one.

Carry the Load’s next stops will be Rensselaer and Albany, New York.