BANGOR – The sixth annual “Support and Escort Motorcycle Ride” took place in Bangor Saturday. It kicks off a ten day hike to honor the fallen as part of the Wilderness Walk for Warriors.
Around 75 motorcycles and 40 Jeeps took off from Florida Avenue in Bangor to go up to Monson.
Up there, nine hikers will be taking part in the Wilderness Walk for Warriors, summiting Mount Katahdin in honor of Maine’s fallen veterans.
“It’s our way of saying thank you,” said Chris Robinson, the founder of Wilderness Walk for Warriors. “120 miles when you finish, there’s 13 mountains in our way, we’re adding full gear and now we’re adding a wall.”
This year, hikers will each be taking a section of a wall with 206 names representing post 9/11 heroes and fallen Maine law enforcement.
For some it’s their first time on the hike.
“Me and eight other men, so we’ll see how it goes,” said Nicole Bellerose, laughing.
“Their families make the sacrifices and this is just a small token of appreciation and gratitude that we can do,” she said of the names they’ll be carrying.
Others who’ve done the trek before have met family members of the fallen heroes they hike in honor of.
“It was very emotional…they were very thankful,” said Tim Nickerson.
“In my world travels, in my little experience, we have something special in the United States and it’s good to remember it and to honor it,” said Trevor Taylor.
Hikers said after a barbecue in Monson, they will trek through the wilderness for ten days, and plan to summit Mount Katahdin on July 23rd.
For those returning and for the new Wilderness Walk for Warriors hikers, it’s the cause that keeps them going all the way to the top.
“It’s painful and you hate it and you ask yourself ‘why am I doing this’ when you’re going up, but when you get to the top you get reminded every time,” said Taylor.