29 Jun US Veteran Decides To Walk 2000 Miles To End Veteran Deportation
With an aim to end Veteran deportation, Ramon Castro, an American Veteran, started a 2000 miles long trek across the entire southern border on June 28.
According to the reports, the trek will be 45 days long. He started by heading east and will walk along the San Ysidro border until he reaches the eastern end of the border near Texas.
While his family is questioning his decision, he is certain to take a stand for non-citizen US Veterans who were deported for committing petty crimes.
Castro served in the Marine Corps for eight years and also served in Kuwait during Operation Iraqi Freedom. He aims to divert attention towards those Vets who are deported for committing minor drug or alcohol crimes. Many reports suggest that these crimes are often linked to service-related conditions like PTSD, mood disorder, chronic pain etc.
After being deported, the Veterans lose all the VA benefits they are eligible for and in desperate need of.
Castro decided to walk 2000 miles after the death of 52-year-old Erasmo “Mito” Apodaca. Apodaca was a green card holder who was deported to Mexico because of a 1998 domestic violence case. For the last 22 years, he had been struggling to get to the US, where his extended family lives.
However, he died in Mexicali due to a heart attack. He had an eight-year-old daughter and died just three days after receiving clearance to return to the US. His next US hearing was in July. However, it was too late.
Castro notes that Apodaca had PTSD and was in desperate need of treatment, which he could not receive in Mexico. Castro also said, “The 45-day border trek- Walk the Line: A March to Bring Our Deported Veterans Home is dedicated to Apodaca. He is the one who inspired it. If he had been helped sooner, and if he had access to VA medical care, he might still be around.”
During the walk, Castro will visit major towns, American Legion posts and Mexican shelters that support US Veterans.
He will also visit the Mexicali cemetery where Apodaca lays buried.