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October 23rd, 2009
01:28 PM ET

Courage, Sacrifice and 26.2 miles

Update: Way to go, Monica! She finished all 26.2 miles of the Marine Corps Marathon on Sunday!

Kyra and our whole team were touched by Monica Velez's powerful story and by your response to helping her raise money for military families.

If you want to help her reach her goal you can still make a donation to TAPS on her website here.

Despite getting a brain injury while training, Monica ran the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, D.C. this weekend in honor of her fallen hero brothers and to raise money for military families through TAPS.

Watch Kyra's interview with Monica:

soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. Cheri Blossoms

    Monica, your story really touched my heart, and your smile and laughter brightened my day and the whole world. The world needs more people like you. I'll send a small donation when next month's social security comes in, and wish I could give more. The world is in desperate need of more angels like you, who can laugh after great tragedy, and go on to help others. Bless you!! And I hope the rest of your life is filled with much joy. Thank you so much for being you!!

    October 23, 2009 at 2:41 pm |
  2. William L. Pollock Jr.

    Kyra, I know and understand what Monica Velez is going through. I am a veteran from the Viet Nam Era. I got out in 1975 and had major problems in dealing with civilian life. It wasn't until 1989, after several misdiagnosis, that i was finally diagnosed with PTSD. I fought with the Government to obtain my service connected rating and disability for over 21 years before I finally got it in 1996. Yes Monica, you too should be diagnosed with the Civilian Version of PTSD with what you have and are continuing to go through. My hope, prayers, support and understanding go out to you for what you are Going to achieve for not only your brothers, but also for yourself. As like you, I never did have the support or understanding of people for what I endured, nor did I have the support group or groups to help me understand myself and what was happening to me or why I was feelig the way i was. I do not know, even now, what this TAPS group is. But Monica, I will tell you this from the bottom of my heart, WELCOME HOME.

    October 23, 2009 at 3:03 pm |
  3. Dirk Cannon

    You are a very special angel. Continue on your journey. I have been working on a docudrama on this military suicide. People need to know and then they need to know how to stop this abomination. Thanks to actions such as you are is a beginning. Thanks for doing this. Much blessings and love to you!

    October 23, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  4. Luis Valenzuela

    Thank you for doing this story. Monica is a great person who is loved by many. She has a big heart and if anyone is determined to make a difference it is her. I can't imagine how many people go through this or something similar and Monica is doing this so that others don't have it as hard as she did. I am very proud of Monica and what she is doing not just for the memory of Freddy and Andrew but for the many families that lose their loved ones. Monica you are a true American Hero!

    October 23, 2009 at 8:12 pm |
  5. Fred

    A very inspirational & moving story!

    October 24, 2009 at 10:50 am |
  6. Chito Peppler


    Thanks for the inspirational piece.

    I had the special occassion to run part of the Marathon with Monica and hear her special story.


    October 28, 2009 at 1:31 pm |