On the 31st of July Tim was in Plains, Georgia with his mother, Shirley. They were in town to see President Jimmy Carter teach a Sunday School class. The Friday before, both Tim and his mother were speaking in Atlanta as guest speakers at the Uniting Forces to Support Military Caregivers Summit.
"It was incredible. Also listening to the statistics was horrifying with wounded in action soldiers. There are more than ever", Said Tim Payne of his experience of the event.
More soldiers served in Afghanistan and Iraq than the Vietnam's conflict and now more than ever, these service men and women need assistance. Uniting Forces to Support Military Caregivers Summit is an annual event that is held by Operation Family Caregiver at The Rosalynn Carter Center and is an event that helps spread the word and knowledge of this need. The organization that runs it, The Operation Family Caregiver, "coaches the families and friends of newly returning service members and veterans to manage difficult transitions."
After the trip to Georgia, it was back to the home front in North Carolina to prepare for the journey to LA. However, first a trip to the 8th annual Purple Heart Dinner at the Richland Creek Community Church in Wake Forest on Saturday, August 6th.
"We're the only people that lived through those type's of things, and not everybody can understand that. So you form a bond that's more sacred than anything else you could have with somebody else, so it is real precious," said Tim of the chance to motivate and speak with his comrades in an interview with WRLA News after the event.
16 Purple Heart recipients were honored at the dinner from all different branches and wars. The event is hosted annually by the Wake Forest Purple Heart Foundation. During the event, Tim shared his story with his fellow Purple Heart recipients as the guest speaker.
"Through our partnership with The Independence Fund, Tires Pro is on a mission to mobilize wounded veterans through a program called Allies for Independence. Help us raise money to deliver customized all-terrain mobility devices to our nation's heroes - and help them regain their independence."
The trip has taken Tim from Oklahoma City to Flagstaff Arizona, then to Kingman, Arizona, and a run in with a fellow veteran. Here are some videos from his trip so far.