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Marine Plans Walk To Benefit Kids With Cleft Palates

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maggieheadshot Maggie Newland
Maggie Newland is a reporter at CBS4. She arrived at the station ...
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DORAL (CBS4)- A Marine who served in Afghanistan is on a new mission: helping kids in South Asia. In September, Winston Fiore will begin a 5,000 mile hike to raise funds to help children born with a cleft palate.

Winston said he’s raising money for the International Children’s Surgical Foundation (ICSF).

“Each surgery only takes a couple hours time and only takes about $240,” Fiore said at a luncheon for members of the Rotary Club of Doral. “That’s how much it takes to completely turn a kid’s life around.”

Sgt Fiore, from Indiana, has been riding his motorcycle across the country speaking to different groups about the hike he calls the “Smile Trek.” And one of his many stops included various cities across South Florida, including a visit to Doral. Fiore met with The Rotary Club of Doral, which raised a total of $2,000 for Smile Trek Friday afternoon.

Fiore got the idea for the Smile Trek in 2007 while he was deployed in Senegal.

“Coming from a middle-class American household, it was certainly an eye opener to me to see women carrying gallons of water on their heads or kids dressed in rags digging through piles of trash,” he said.

Seeing extreme poverty inspired him to help children in the developing world. So after hearing about ICSF,  Fiore realized a simple surgery could give kids with little else: a reason to smile.

For more information on Smile Trek, click here.

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