Brotherhood Ride kicks off in Plaquemine: honoring those lost in the line of duty

Brotherhood Ride kicks off in Plaquemine: honoring those lost in the line of duty
Photo provided by staff.

POSTED: Thursday, May 22, 2014 - 4:11pm

UPDATED: Thursday, May 22, 2014 - 4:19pm

About forty cyclists from across the nation came together Thursday morning to embark on a nine day journey on the open road toward Texas. The whole trip is to honor 19 firefighters who lost their lives in the line of duty.

Our first responder’s are men and women who are often overlooked but never forgotten.

"People need to understand the risk you state everyday, sometimes even 24 hours a day. When others are running out, the firefighters are running in," said Baton Rouge’s Mayor, Kip Holden.

This group the Brotherhood Ride is made of a support team and of course the first responders who are on a nine day journey to Texas, on bikes.

“We're going to cycle 800 miles over the course of 9 days and that's nothing compared to what our brothers and sisters have gone through," said Michael Cruz.

Michael Cruz a Texas native has been fighting fires for 18 years; he’s riding to remember the people who've died in the line of duty.

Craig Russell is riding to honor and remind himself why he does what he does.

“It's a great reason. It’s about the brotherhood, its about first responders and its about these people who gave their lives to protect their communities and were now going to honor those and be part of that is just a tremendous honor for me I am extremely proud and glad to be on this team."

Russell applied over one year ago to participate and now he’s is ready to ride.

“I am meeting forty something riders that I have never met before and ill be spending 9 days with those riders and the support crew that we have,” said Russell. “So I am going to build relationships.”

And even though the 19 people being honored this year are not from Louisiana, Russell and Cruz say it doesn't matter, they are all one.

"It doesn’t matter what part of the country were from even if we don’t know them were still going to cycle for them."

The group spent a few days at the Elk Lodge in Plaquemine before leaving for their journey Thursday morning. They have raised over 191,000 bucks since 2006 for the families of those lost in the line of duty.

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