18th annual Veteran’s Tribute Ride in Iron Mountain
More than 100 bikers drove 100 miles while saluting veterans who served our country
IRON MOUNTAIN, Mich. (WLUC) - On Saturday, dozens of bikers gathered in Iron Mountain and rode together for an annual Memorial Day Weekend tradition.
The sound of burning engines could be heard across the area, as more than 100 motorcyclists took part in the 18th annual Veterans Tribute Ride. It is an event where bikers ride together to remember those who fought for our nation.
Event Secretary Greg Blahnik said riders get satisfaction out of it while also donating to a good cause.
“We raise money for the local Legions and VFWs that don’t have the funding available,” said Blahnik.
The group drove 100 miles to and from Iron River before ending at Iron Mountain’s American Legion Post 50. All money raised will benefit veteran organizations in the western U.P. and northern Wisconsin.
Army veteran Carl Aho came all the way from Gwinn to participate for the first time.
“I’ve ridden other places at other times, and I don’t think I ever had a group this large at one spot,” Aho said.
Before going on their full journey, the group made their traditional stop at the Oscar G. Johnson Veterans Hospital. Riders waved to the present veterans and showed their appreciation.
“It’s an event our veterans look forward to every single year. It’s loud, it’s busy, there’s a lot of people, and they don’t normally get that,” said Katie Maxon, the VA Chief of Voluntary Service and Public Affairs
Aho said he is already looking forward to next year’s ride.
“I will do this again as long as I’m not having to work. And since I’m retired, I’m not working anymore. I’ll be back,” said Aho.
A veteran himself, Blahnik said this weekend is a time of remembrance.
“We lost a lot of people my second tour in Iraq,” Blahnik said. “I appreciate everyone that comes out and does this. I know it’s in their hearts, too.”
All of the riders are grateful for those who served our country with pride and patriotism. They plan to rev it up and pay tribute again next year.
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