MISSOULA – Reminding families of fallen soldiers their loved one is not forgotten — and that’s exactly what a group of former veterans is doing on a cross country motorcycle ride.
The Tribute to Fallen Soldiers Northwest Ride started in Eugene, Oregon on Sunday and made a pit stop in Missoula on Tuesday as they continue their journey to Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.
While in Montana, the group will be visiting families of three fallen soldiers in Helena, Bozeman and Billings. And along the route to their final stop, they do this for 65 U.S. families.
They spend an hour with each family with the goal of making sure their loved one is not forgotten.
Volunteer Bill Filley says when a family loses their soldier – the first year is filled with friends and family by their side.
However, after a while, people start to move on – and that’s where these volunteers step in.
“When we do these visits it really gives the families more closure and to let them know that they won’t be forgotten. That’s what all this is about, to let them know they gave their life for our country and they will not be forgotten,” volunteer Bill Filley said.
During the 22 day ride across the country, a flame stays lit as a reminder of the spirit and life of all the fallen soldiers.
The group has visited more than 860 families over the 10 years that the ride has taken place.