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Idaho Man Runs To Honor Iraq War Veterans

Doug Nadvornick

A north Idaho man is waging a one–man campaign to honor each US soldier killed in Iraq. Every morning he pulls on his running shoes and heads to his next stop with a handful of American flags


On May 1, retired Postal Service worker Mike Ehredt took off running from the mouth of the Columbia River in Astoria, Oregon. A mile later, he stopped and planted a little American flag in the dirt. The flag carries the name of a US service member who died during the war in Iraq.

The Army veteran kept going, stopping every mile to put down another flag. Three–hundred miles later, he's slugging down a half gallon of chocolate milk in the southeastern Washington town of Waitsburg and talking about the bond between military veterans.

Ehredt: "There's a connection we all have, whatever our affinity is: Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard. I felt, for whatever reason, maybe because I have a son the age of a lot of those that have been lost in Iraq, to do something personal to say thanks for their service."

Ehredt's route will take him through north Idaho and the town of Hope, where he lives. He'll head south through eastern Idaho and then turn east. In all, he'll plant about 4,400 flags, one for each American soldier lost in Iraq. He expects to reach the Atlantic Ocean in mid–October.

I'm Doug Nadvornick in Waitsburg, Washington.

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