By American Forces Press ServiceAugust 21, 2008
WASHINGTON - A California troop-support group is paying tribute to Servicemembers who died while serving in Operation Iraqi Freedom with a mobile memorial.
The Fueled by the Fallen Memorial Race Car Team -- a trio of cars bearing the names of Marines who died in Iraq -- makes appearances around the country to raise awareness of the sacrifices made in defense of the United States.
Fueled by the Fallen also strives to provide support for the families of fallen heroes and to support and raise awareness for those who are afflicted with post-traumatic stress disorder, Ken Horkavy, the organization's vice president, said. "We try to find every possible way we can to help ensure that the transition back into civilian life as painless as possible," he said.
The organization, created by actor Kevyn Major Howard of "Full Metal Jacket" fame, has the goal of converting cars to honor the fallen of all the military branches, according to its Web site. Those cars, when they're complete, would join the original three, touring the country and raising awareness of the sacrifices Servicemembers have made on the country's behalf.
Fueled by the Fallen is a new supporter of America Supports You, a Defense Department program connecting citizens and companies with Servicemembers and their families serving at home and abroad.
Organization officials say they hope affiliation with the Defense Department program will add to the program's credibility. They also hope to gain networking and fundraising opportunities so Fueled by the Fallen can continue helping families of fallen Servicemembers.
"The project itself is unique in concept and appearance," Horkavy said. "As Kevyn Major Howard said, 'You can get a 2-year-old to look at a race car and you can get a 92-year-old to look at it.'"