Special Ops airmen march to Tampa to remember fallen comrades

Published: Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 10:02 AM.

HURLBURT FIELD — This past Sunday, 15 airmen lined up along the sidewalk in the early morning sun.

They read the names of their five fallen comrades, hoisted their 40-pound rucksacks onto their backs and took their first brisk steps.

Over 450 miles of winding road lay before them.

The men are marching day and night to Tampa, Fla., in remembrance of the five special operations airmen from Hulburt Field who were killed in action last year. They expect to arrive Friday.

They were in Mexico Beach and Port St. Joe on Monday, staying overnight at the Port Inn in Port St. Joe.

“We’re honoring our heroes step by step,” said Sgt. Deon McGowen, who organized the rucksack march. “It’s great today, tomorrow is going to be tough, Tuesday is going to be even harder.”

The men who were killed were the marchers’ friends, roommates and brothers-in-arms.

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