CARSON CITY, Nev – On Wednesday, a group of motorcyclists will finish their 25-hundred-mile journey to honor fallen soldiers in Nevada, Washington, Oregon and California.
About a dozen people rode into the Carson City Harley Davidson on Tuesday afternoon. It was the second-to-last leg in a four-state journey to honor soldiers lost to war. The managing director, Warren Williamson, says, “We wanted to do more, we wanted to go to them, and let them know, even though their fallen soldier may be gone, he will never be forgotten.”
The group towed a memorial torch, which has been burning since the journey started last week in Seattle. During some stops there were ceremonies for specific soldiers, but at each there was a reading of names. On Tuesday, the names of 15 Nevadans who died in recent conflicts were read out loud. The names of three Guardsmen and one civilian killed during the 2011 IHOP shooting were added to the list. Williamson says, “We did not want to leave anyone out, if we came to a specific city and a Gold Star family was there, and we honored that soldier, we wanted to make sure that other soldiers were not left out.”
One California man was so moved by a ceremony done last week that he joined the riders to honor Nevadans on Tuesday. Kevin Graves said, “I try to do everything I can to personally progress through the grieving process, to try to fill the void, to try and deal with the pain. But I know in doing so I can also help other families do that.” Graves knows personally that ceremonies like the one performed Tuesday are a step in ensuring families since he lost son Joseph.
The group will finish iys ride at Stateline, where several more soldiers will be honored and the memorial torch will be extinguished.