On June 23, 2012, Matthew Kerner walked into Montecito Fire Station #1 on his fundraising trek across America benefitting Active Heroes, a non profit organization assisting veterans, active duty military and their families.
Upon entering Montecito, Matt was escorted to the Station by MFD Engine 91, Squad 91. Montecito Fire's new Fire Chief, Chip Hickman, walked along with him on the last few miles before reaching the Station. To make Matt feel at home, the firefighters prepared a traditional spaghetti dinner for him, and shared stories about his journey.
"This is an admirable mission that Matt has taken on," Chief Hickman stated. "Raising funds and showing his support to the troops, as well as helping military families in need is very commendable, and we are happy to show support of his cause."
Matt learned of the sacrifices our veteran's make after his brother Justin Kerner joined the Marines shortly after graduating high school. His brother served several combat tours in Iraq, and had a difficult time recovering from the stresses caused by his experiences. "I believe we are all indebted to our veterans," said Matt. He has set out to hike across America from San Francisco to Washington D.C. in an effort to raise awareness and funding.
You can follow Matt on his journey and make donations at the Active Heroes website: activeheroes.org/kerner.