DICKSON CITY, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Over 100 people rode to support a local non-profit that helps veterans in our area.
“When we put that uniform on, we’re warriors, I mean that’s who we are. That never goes away. The oath we took never goes away, never expires, and to me, the show of love here is just about that,” Veteran’s Promise president and founder David Ragan said.
The rumbling of motorcycle vehicles was almost deafening as people rode out of the Genetti’s Manor parking lot for the fourth annual Promise Keepers Honoring the Fallen ride. The ride was hosted by Veteran’s Promise NEPA, a non-profit dedicated to helping and advocating for veterans and their families. Sunday was all about raising awareness for the many struggles veterans face when they come home from serving.
“We lose statistically 22 veterans a day to suicide, so our organization is dedicated to reducing that number every day,” Ragan said.
Riders headed to Merli-Sarnoski Park for a ceremony to retrieve and replace a flag there and read the plaques for two Medal of Honor winners that the park was named after.
“It’s an emotional day you know, with all this craziness we have in the world to have a turnout like this, with all the stuff that’s going on. We’re really really so grateful,” Ragan said.
Organizers tell Eyewitness News this is one of the biggest fundraisers for the Veteran’s Promise.
Doing an event like this, this is the only way that we can get funds. It’s a hard way, but hopefully they’ll be other avenues that we can reach out to,” Veteran’s Promise vice president Raymond Stender said.
Patrick Hart had tears in his eyes as he watched the riders head back from the ceremony to Genetti’s Manor, where an awards ceremony was held.
“There’s monuments all over this country for those who died on the battlefields and they’re rightfully so, but there’s thousands that come home every year that fight the battles at home and lose them at home. What we just saw with the motorcycle ride leaving out of here reminded me that it’s a never-ending battle,” Hart, a Sergeant in Arms & Drug and Alcohol Advocate for Veteran’s Promise, said.
He says he is thankful for the support they received at Sunday’s event.