Community members gather for Ruck March to Hudson Food Pantry


Community members gather for Ruck March to Hudson Food Pantry
Participants gather in front of the Hudson Food Pantry after participating in the Ruck March. (Photo/Tyler Charpentier)

HUDSON – The Hudson Food Pantry partnered with the New England Chapter of the Travis Manion Foundation for a Ruck March on Jan. 21. The march began at the American Heritage Museum, then followed along Main Street and ended at the food pantry.

This march was in honor of the Rev. Dr Martin Luther King Jr. as part of the Travis Manion Foundation’s Operation Service Project in Hudson. 

Participants were asked to pack a backpack of nonperishable food items as they walked 3.8 miles from the American Heritage Museum back to the Hudson Food Pantry. It began  at 10 a.m. and ended at 11:20 a.m. with a lunch provided by the food pantry. 

Afterwards, attendees carpooled back to the museum for a tour.

Aubrey Bussey is the organizer of this event and a graduate of Travis Manion Foundation’s Spartan Leadership Program. She first began her journey with this foundation after participating in their 9/11 heroes run in 2021. 

“After applying to the leadership program, I began looking inwards to see what I could do to help serve my community,” said Bussey. 

This is her first large-scale event that she has organized after her graduation from the Spartan Leadership Program. 

Bussey reached out to the president of the food pantry Donna Dupre to team up in executing this march. 

As a daughter of a retired Navy Officer with two sons in the service, Dupre felt that this event “was just perfect for us and we’re so happy to do this; hopefully there will be more events in the future.” 

Many attendees had familial military ties or even a military background themselves. 

Veteran Mark Lavoie was a participant in the march and served across seas with deployments in Iraq and Africa. 

This is Lavoie’s first ruck as he carried a 40-pound backpack filled with peanut butter, ketchup, mayonnaise, soup, chili and spaghetti.

He took great pride in participating in the ruck. 

“It means a lot to me, I feel like I’m a healthy human being and I love to give back to the community,” he said.

When asked if he would participate in another ruck march, Lavoie said “absolutely, today was a great day.”