MIAMI VALLEY, Ohio (WDTN) — A Putnam County veteran recently walked through the Miami Valley, with a goal of walking the entire state of Ohio to help veterans remember that they still have a lot to offer after their service.
“Veterans have so much to offer the country,” said Conrad Allen, army veteran.
Conrad has an ambitious goal: He wants to walk the state of Ohio to make sure every veteran know they matter.
“I’m happy to come out here and do this. I’m encouraging other veterans to do this, and they are. All across the country,” said Conrad.
It’s a family affair for the Allens. When 2 NEWS caught up with them in Tipp City, Conrad’s daughter Abby was walking with him and Conrad’s wife Didi helps him plan the logistics each day.
“She’s in charge of whether I get to go or not. She checks my feet every day. She pulled me off the road, we were at the Dairy Queen, she looked, she said, ‘you’re out,'” said Conrad.
He started the journey in his hometown of Ottawa, Ohio, up in Putnam County. He said he’s heading home, but he’s taking the long way.
“I’m going through Cincinnati, we’re going through Marietta, up to Youngstown, through Cleveland, Toledo, back to my house in Ottawa,” said Conrad.
He said he’s gotten a lot of support from people passing by along the way. Especially when he carries the “Back the Blue” flag.
“I know our police make mistakes, and our prosecutors have to deal with that, but the vast majority of the police are really good,” said Conrad.
His goal is to spread love, and to make sure veterans know their service doesn’t have to end when they hang up their uniforms.
“Find what you can do. Maybe there’s something you can do. Maybe you’re painting pictures, maybe you’re helping people in town, whatever your talent might be, find it and you’ll get that same feeling we had when we were in active duty. That feeling of service and love for country,” said Conrad.