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British Soldier Walking To Raise Awareness Of PTSD Arrives In Peekskill

Neal Davis (right) with Nick Saint Onge outside the Holiday Inn Express in Peekskill.
Neal Davis (right) with Nick Saint Onge outside the Holiday Inn Express in Peekskill. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Neal Davis

PEEKSKILL, N.Y. -- These might have been the toughest 35 miles British Army veteran Neil Davis has had to walk.

Davis continued his nationwide walk across America Thursday, walking 35 miles from Danbury to Putnam County , then ending up in Peekskill by nightfall. Davis is hoping to raise awareness about veterans suffering from post traumatic stress disorder. (PTSD)

Overall, Davis is walking 3,178 miles through 15 states. He served for 24 years in the British Army and also worked as a contractor for the U.S. Department of Defense in war-torn Afghanistan and Iraq.

Davis said Thursday's walk was hard due to the distance, the hills and all of the traffic.

"It was terrifying," said Davis, who is staying at a hotel in Peekskill overnight.

But the outpouring of support from people helped keep Davis going.

"It was amazing," Davis said. "People were honking their horn at me. People are definitely recognizing me."

Davis' favorite part of being in Putnam and Westchester was the people he encountered along the way.

"The people are so good here," Davis said. "Everyone is so nice. People are making everything so easier. I've received some really warm hospitality."

Focusing on his walk meant Davis didn't get a chance to look at some of the famous landmarks that dot the area, but he said Putnam and Westchester had lots of trees and some beautiful roads.

"I could've walked by the Empire State Building and not noticed it," Davis said. "I was only looking at the traffic in front of me."

Davis is raising money for Wounded Warriors and Combat Stress and said veterans from the United Kingdom and the US deserve more.

"I'm concerned about the rate of suicide and homelessness among veterans," Davis said. "There are thousands of veterans who don't want to talk about their problems. We're very proud, we don't like to show weakness."

The response from veterans and their families has been very positive.

"It's really emotional," Davis said. "I've met veterans from many different wars. We're one big brotherhood. Everyone changes when they go to war. You don't come back the same person."

To follow his journey across America, which he hopes to complete by Nov. 30, like his Facebook Page: Not Broken Just Damaged Walk Across America 2015 . Donations can also be made in honor of his walk online at the Wounded Warriors Project website. All donations go to charity.

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