Since 2011 one non-profit, Carry The Load, dedicate themselves to restoring the true meaning of Memorial Day, our nation’s heroes – military, law enforcement, firefighters, rescue personnel, and their families.
During the month of May, Carry The Load walks from West Point, NY and reaches Dallas, Texas by Memorial Day. Carry The Load found its way into Yardley Borough’s hearts through Chris Harding, in the race for Mayor at the time, some five-years ago.
“It all started one day I was coming home from work…and I passed this guy…and (he) was carrying a giant American flag,” Harding said on WBCB’s Yardley Boro On-Air Wednesday afternoon.
Since that day, Harding learned more and more about the non-profit, and Yardley Borough’s involvement has grown over the years.
Last year Harding broke volunteers into teams to walk with Carry The Load from Washington Crossing Park to Independence Hall in Philadelphia.
This year, Mayor Harding, Frank Mancuso, Jamie Mancuso, Brent Johnson, Mike Mastropaolo, Rebecca Nutt, and Gabby DiFraincisco will travel the entire 40 miles, 15 to 16-hour journey along with Joel Rutkowski of the Levittown-Fairless Hills Rescue Squad following in vehicle.
“It’s a little hot out…but at the end of the day it’s all for a great cause so I’m happy to participate in it,” Jamie Mancuso said.
State Rep. Perry Warren and David Bria, Borough Council Member walked with the group as they passed into Pennsylvania to a rally at the Yardley Borough Veterans Monument.
Harding addressed the crowd and said the Borough always tries to raise the bar a little bit. “We’re lucky to be able to do this and it’s our honor,” the Mayor said.
The Yardley Borough group will be carrying U.S. Marine Capt. Sam Shultz of Huntington Valley. Shultz was killed in a helicopter training exercise crash in early April.
Lane Riley the East Coast Relay Manager said it’s nice to have support from a “homegrown” town like the Borough.
“It’s a healing process for a lot of people, even though it’s an awareness program it does so much more than just bring awareness to our organization,” Riley said.
Those who walk with Carry The Load carries someone with them, someone who has served, is serving, or who were lost in the line of duty.
Ted Smith, Commander of the American Legion Post 317 in Yardley, said it’s an honor to see people, “trying to bring back the memory of Memorial Day.”
“It’s not all hot dogs and hamburgers, it’s honoring those who died in servicing their country.”
Tune in Friday morning on WBCB 1490 AM to see how the journey went. And Friday evening there will be a Post Rally Fundraising Celebration from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Continental Tavern. There will be drink and food specials as well as music and raffle baskets.