The serious injuries sustained by Natick’s Kimberly Gunner and Andrew Colbert in a hit-and-run accident over the summer have inspired countless people locally and beyond to offer their support through a variety of selfless actions.
More than $160K has been raised through an initial crowdfunding campaign, and other fundraisers contributed thousands more to the cause. A pay-what-you-can yard sale raised funds, too. And the public art group behind LOVE 01760 produced hearts for the couple that were much appreciated.
Another fundraiser that recently came to our attention was spearheaded by AJ Moran, longtime owner of Nine East Wine Emporium on Rte. 9 east in Natick.
Moran doesn’t know Gunner or Colbert, but was motivated by Gunner’s injuries and the fact that she lives in Natick to raise funds via a ruck march. He wanted to help the couple pay medical and other bills stemming from the accident.
“Ruck marches are an important tool for veterans to raise money for all kinds of causes that are important to them,” Moran says. “Ruck marches and the camaraderie associated with them are a great way to motivate other veterans to participate.”
Moran and four other Rangers marched 26.2km, while wearing 40lb rucksacks, through Natick, Wellesley and Wayland in November. They finished their 4.5-hour trek at the Natick Veterans Services office on Rte. 135. They promoted the march through social media pages for veterans and personal military contacts.
While Kimberly Gunner and Andrew Colbert still have a long recovery ahead of them, the outpouring of support from friends, family, and the many others who just want to help can only make things better.