AIKEN, S.C. (WJBF) — In Aiken, a Marine Corps veteran reaches the finish line of his 22-hour workout.
“We’ve seen some interesting people that have had some stories,” said Adam Cooper, the retired marine. “One lady lost her son to suicide…”
Cooper began his workout at 4 p.m. on Wednesday. He beat his personal record on the stair climber by clocking nearly 15 hours without stopping.
A few times, he took a ‘break’ on the bike.
“I’m happy that it’s turning out the way I wanted it to turn out and veterans are realizing there’s people out there that care,” said Cooper. “And…don’t be afraid to reach out. We’re always here.”
Cooper often says the gym saved his life. And because of a reported statistic that 22 veterans commit suicide each day, he felt the gym would be a great place to raise awareness for mental health in the veteran community.
And it was.
“Our partner element ‘When Life Sucks’ in the upstate of South Carolina started reaching out to us,” said Lowell Koppert, chairman of the Aiken County Veterans Council. “And, already at that point, had received notification from roughly a hundred veterans across the county that have reached out and said, ‘hey, I’d like to speak to somebody’.”
Cooper finished at 2 p.m. on Thursday, triumphant.
And he’s just getting started.
“I’m glad it’s over, but at the same time it was fun doing it,” said Cooper. “More importantly, it was good to bring awareness to veteran suicide. And I’m pleased with the response that we’re getting and I hope to do something similar to this in the future and continue to just bring awareness to veteran suicide.”
If you or someone you know needs help, you can dial 988 or reach out to the Aiken County Veterans Council.
You can support by making a donation to When Life Sucks– a foundation aimed at supporting veterans experiencing trauma- or through 56Brave or Pick Up the Six podcast.
You can also follow Adam on Instagram @neverquitfitdad22.