By Tim Sproles
North of Indianapolis, in the quiet town of Cicero Ind., things got pretty loud over the weekend.
A group of more than 120 motorcycles with close to 170 riders, traveled to Cicero Saturday to take part in the 3rd annual “Battle Ride”, hosted by The American Legion Riders Cicero Chapter out of Post 341.
This annual fundraiser benefits The American Legion program Operation Comfort Warriors, which aims to provide additional comfort items to veterans not normally received while receiving medical treatment. This includes recreational and therapeutic options for our wounded, or injured veterans.
The program focuses primarily on injured or ill troops with severe injuries like post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury, the signature wounds of current conflicts.
“About 20% of all the veterans that come back from Afghanistan and Iraq are diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)", said Jody Brown, Commander of Cicero Post 341.
“Only about half of them seek any kind of treatment at all. It’s just a real problem and we just feel that something needs to be done and we want to do our part to see what we can do to help."
The Battle Ride started at the Cicero Post and made scheduled stops at both the Whitestown American Legion Post 410 and the Fairmount American Legion Post 313.
When everything was said and done, the Battle Ride raised over $4,300 for OCW.
“We traveled about 125 miles today and we finished up here at Harley-Davidson of Indianapolis," said Dave Baughman, Director of the Legion Riders Cicero Chapter.
"They were kind enough to not only host the closing event to our Battle Ride, but they also pledged 5% of their sales to OCW while we are on ground today."
Past National Commander of The American Legion, Jim Koutz, was on-hand to accept the check.
“I just really appreciate the hard work our Cicero Legion Riders each year to put on this Battle Ride. It is a lot of work for these Legionnaires, but they never lose focus that we are here to help veterans, " said Koutz.
If you would like more information on the Battle Ride, Click Here.
For more information on the OCW program, Click Here.
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