By: Fleet Equipment Magazine

In remembrance of military members who have lost their lives while serving the United States, and in honor of the surviving families, PepsiCo recently launched its fourth annual “Rolling Remembrance” relay to help spread awareness for Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation.

This year’s “Rolling Remembrance” relay will journey more than 8,000 miles throughout the United States, starting in Seattle and concluding in White Plains, N.Y. on May 24. Using normal business routes, drivers of PepsiCo and Frito-Lay trucks who are U.S. military veterans will pass off a flag to one another at 50 different relay points.

Existing programs intended and designed to provide assistance for the education of children of deceased veterans do not cover the full cost of college and many surviving families struggle to make ends meet, with 63% of surviving spouses making less than $50,000 per year. Through scholarships and educational counseling, Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation has helped to bridge the $32,000 gap between government assistance programs and the cost of a four-year degree that scholars face. The Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation believes that investing in the education of Gold Star children is one of the best ways we can honor those who died defending our country.

“Rolling Remembrance allows us to recognize the sacrifices of veterans and their families and contribute to a cause we believe in deeply,” said Jim Farrell, PepsiCo’s vice president of logistics, distribution and transportation. “It is an honor to also have the ability to involve our own employees who have served their country, whether it’s by giving them the opportunity to drive a leg of the trip or organizing events along the route.”

The “Rolling Remembrance” flag was originally flown on a UH-60M Blackhawk Helicopter in Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom 2012. As the flag moves from region to region, drivers and representatives will show their support locally by cheering on the drivers and taking photos to share on social media using #RollingRemembrance. Local communities can also show their financial support for Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation here.

To date, “Rolling Remembrance” has raised more than $360,000 for Fallen Patriots, with $203,000 coming from last year’s campaign. Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation continues to identify and support the 20,000 Gold Star children who have been left behind by troops killed in the line of duty over the past 35 years.

“PepsiCo is known for its passionate dedication to serving veterans and their families. PepsiCo’s Rolling Remembrance program has provided 58 years of college to children whose parents made the ultimate sacrifice for our country,” said David Kim, co-founder and chief executive officer of the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation. “PepsiCo and its dedicated and caring employees have played a crucial role in honoring the sacrifice of our fallen heroes by investing in the future of those they loved most: their children.”