Irreverent Warriors walk ‘Silkies Hike’ around Denver

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DENVER -- A group of about 100 men and women who were scantily dressed walked around the Denver on Saturday.

They are veterans, members of the Irreverent Warriors, participating in the second "Silkies Hike' -- named after the short shorts that are received during boot camp.

"Some sort of weird parade," Jesse James, an organizer, said when asked what people think.

James said the hike is meant to boost veterans' morale -- a modern day mobile VFW hall.

"A lot of people saying, 'Wow I really needed this, I've been having a hard time in my life,'" James said.

The event was first organized by Donny O'Malley, a veteran, after a friend committed suicide.

O'Malley said that while veterans wear 22 kilograms of gear and hike 22 kilometers in honor of the painfully real daily veteran suicide rate, the hike has evolved into something more.

"The intent is to start the day with a laugh. Like immediately, you see these big dudes with beards and little shorts you can’t be serious," O'Malley said.

While this weekend's event did not occur because of the 9/11 anniversary, the anniversary has significant meaning.

"I’d say 90 percent of the people here enlisted because of 9/11," O'Malley said.

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