Kelly's AT thru-hike 2018
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Kelly's AT thru-hike 2018
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Update: 7/17/18 - I summited Katahdin on July 16th after 3 months and 27 days on the trail. Thank you so much to the supporters that could help generate my footsteps into a larger change!


Hey everyone! Thank you for helping me support Hike for Mental Health during my 2018 thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail. My goal is to raise a dollar for every mile I complete, and I have every confidence I will surpass this goal. I am sure there is more information on their website than you would ever care to know, but what I found most impressive is 100% of their funds are given away. Eighty percent is put towards grants to fund mental health research while the other twenty is used for trail restoration and maintenance of public lands.

I knew I wanted to partner with an organization to help raise money as I completed my journey, but choosing one was no easy task. Where do you look when there are so many worthwhile options out there? Shout out to my Skimmbassador friends for helping me find an organization that touched on two things I am passionate about! I am so thankful for all the support I have received already, and am glad my steps are going to be having much more impact than just a few footprints on a trail!

ABOUT Appalachian Trail

1 in 4 families is affected by mental illness.

I chose to make HIKE for Mental Health a part of my Appalachian Trail hike so I can raise funds for a great cause and reduce the stigma of mental illness.

HIKE for Mental Health is a recognized 501(c)(3) nonprofit founded on the vision of a world in which everyone, including those who suffer mental illness, can find the simple joy of living.

Our mission is to alleviate the suffering of those afflicted by mental illness, eliminate the associated stigma, and to foster responsible use of wilderness trails.

As an all-volunteer organization, we distribute 100% of contributions raised by our hikers.

  • 80 cents from every dollar funds scientific research to prevent, cure, and treat mental illness
  • 20 cents maintains and preserves wilderness trails

Your donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by the IRS. Thank you for your support.

To learn more, visit

To register your own hike with HIKE for Mental Health, click here.

Name Date Amount Comments
Rachel Schillo 07/18/2018 $50.00 Congrats on your achievements and I love his cause!
Lori Gerlach 07/12/2018 $25.00  
Carol Cucurullo 07/12/2018 $5.00 Good luck!
Joseph E. Taney 07/11/2018 $200.00 Hey Kellikens, Here's a few to help get through your great endeavor. I'm very proud of you and your doing great. Love you Your Pop Pop
Phoebe Call 07/09/2018 $50.00 Rick and I very much enjoyed meeting you and hearing your AT stories. Keep on trekking!
Emma Hurlbert 07/09/2018 $25.00 Keep up the incredible work!
Chef Rob Anderson 07/07/2018 $50.00  
Amanda Deisenroth 07/07/2018 $25.00 Get it girl! You’re amazing!
Colleen & Joel ODonnell 07/01/2018 $25.00 What a wonderful cause! You got this Kelly!
Elizabeth Cook 06/25/2018 $10.00 You got this! Your Skimm fam is behind you
Morgan Sinclair 06/24/2018 $5.00  
Cristen Heavens 06/24/2018 $5.00 Hike on, girl! You're going great!
Anonymous Friend 06/24/2018 $10.00 Goodluck! -Skimm Friend
Ashley Ellis 06/24/2018 $36.00 Good luck from a fellow Skimmbassador!
Karli Wood 06/24/2018 $15.00 Go Skimm Girl, Go!
Beth McMillan 06/24/2018 $5.00 Keep up the good work! You have the Charlotte SB’s supporting you back home
Rachel Roffman 06/24/2018 $10.00 You're amazing!!
Anonymous Friend 06/08/2018 $23.00 Let's put you over $1,800. Keep going!
Michael Ridgeway 04/02/2018 $50.00  
Anonymous Friend 03/21/2018 $100.00 You’re amazing Kelly and don’t ever forget it!
Anonymous Friend 03/19/2018 $40.00 Thank you for getting the word out and helping to reduce stigma.
Chris Martin 03/16/2018 $25.00 You got this Kelly, You're going to have a blast. I'm jealous!!
Chris Harker 03/15/2018 $200.00 Funds raised at Triple C Brewing on 3/14
Kevin and David 03/14/2018 $60.00 Hike on!
Melanie Schnurbusch 03/07/2018 $200.00  
Karin Pierson 03/07/2018 $35.00 So proud of you for living your best life and going after your dreams! You’re such an inspiration, and I’m so happy to call you my friend.
Michael Baker 03/05/2018 $22.00 Be good. Do good.
Nancy Suslowitz 02/21/2018 $20.00 Kelly, I’m so grateful to you for doing this. I suffer from mental illness and plan on doing my AT thru-hike March of 2019. Hiking is the one thing that truly heals me. I plan to do my hike for “Hike for Mental Health” as well. Do you know, do they make T-shirt’s or other merchandise for promotion of their cause? You have a wonderful hike- you deserve it!! Nancy
Bruce Kerschner 02/16/2018 $40.00 Great that you have this chance in your life to go and do what you want to do and yet still thinking of others that struggle with Mental Illnesses. #GoHike#ThruHikeKelly#Success#AchievetheDream.
Susan Kerschner 02/16/2018 $60.00 What a great way to make awareness of Mental Health Illnesses. Enjoy the walk through the woods. Love you, Mom Your Grandparents Kerschners' will walk beside you.
Anonymous Friend 02/16/2018 $35.00 A lot of determination and solo time with yourself calms the special spirit you share with others. Great Organization to Walk for.
Lucy Hensley 02/15/2018 $20.00 Best of luck- I know you'll learn a lot about yourself and others in this trip. Hope we can tear up Charlotte together when you're back
Joy Williams 02/14/2018 $75.00  
Marsha Smith 02/13/2018 $50.00 Read your story, and so impressed. I sing in all church choir sometimes, and know what a great group it is.
Badal Gandhi 02/12/2018 $10.00 Great cause ! Good luck
Choir At Southpark Church 02/11/2018 $400.00  
Pender Ibach 02/11/2018 $20.00 Your strength is so inspiring, I wish you so much luck roomie! I'll miss ya!
Michael Lutz 02/09/2018 $65.00  
Leigh Ann Sells 02/06/2018 $100.00 Thanks Kelly for working to reduce the stigma for those who suffer from Mental Health issues! Love you, be safe!
Linnea Crowther 02/05/2018 $25.00  
Jordan Pingitore 01/31/2018 $10.00 You are one bad ass girl Kelly! Stay safe out there!
Aleena Cuillard 01/31/2018 $40.00 I support your hike to encourage those family members and friends of mine who valiantly struggle for better mental health.
DaNae Currington 01/31/2018 $50.00 I wish you much success and remember "Hike your own Hike"
Rick Besterman 01/29/2018 $25.00  
Anonymous Friend 01/26/2018 $10.00  
  Total $2,361.00  
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