GRAPEVINE -- They came in droves on Friday night to the local VFW Post #10454 to raise awareness about veteran's issues, and to thank Larry Hinkle.

Hinkle, a Marine veteran himself who served in Iraq, has spent the past couple of years helping veterans and first responders through his group, Phase Line.

But it's the 2,700-mile trek he is making from Camp Lejune in North Caroline to Camp Pendleton in California that really caught people's attention.

"This is about the appreciation factor and showing each other love. 'Hey man, I may not know but I've got your back anytime,'" he says.

It's also about not forgetting those men and women in uniform, including first responders, who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

"I march in memory of certain guys, like 1st Sgt. Edward Smith," says Hinkle, who lives in Southlake when he isn't on the road.

He tries to get in 20 miles a day. Nights are spent in a camper his team helps haul on the journey.

Usually fellow veterans, police officers, firefighters or just strangers will come along for part of the trek, too.

"They're loved and appreciated. That's what this is about," he says.

Friday night there is a raffle and other chances to donate to the cause at the Grapevine post.

Vietnam era veterans like Doyle Tracer say they're proud North Texas is showing support.

"It touches my heart very much. It's just amazing," he said.

For more information on Hinkle's trek, and if he will be coming through an area near you, go here.