If you heard a lot of loud noise and saw more motorcyles in town than usual, that’s because approximately 300 motorcyling American Legion, Auxiliary and Sons of the American Legion members rode through Ely on Tuesday, Aug. 15, on their way to Reno for the 99th annual American Legion Convention.
Riders traveled down Great Basin Boulevard in a motorcade escorted by the White Pine County Sheriff’s office to the Veterans Memorial at the courthouse, where a wreath laying ceremony was held. Several people from the community attended, and were in amazement of the number of riders.
A tourist by the name of Wendy said “I was watching all of the bikes come down the road while I was touring the Museum and jumped in my car to see where they went, I’ve never seen anything like this.”
The riders stayed overnight in Ely, and headed out early Wednesday morning finishing their last leg to Reno.
The Riders began their journey on Aug. 12 at the Kansas Soldiers’ Home in Fort Dodge, Kansas.
They will have traveled 1,300 miles through four states before they conclude in Reno at the American Legion’s National Convention August 18-24, 2017.
The American Legion White Pine Post 3 held a barbecue for all of the riders at the Ely Elks Lodge.
The main purpose of this is to raise funds for scholarships for children who lost a parent or parents in military service or whose parent/parents were more than 50 percent disabled.
Since its inception in 2002, more than $12 million has been raised for the American Legion Legacy Scholarship. The American Legion Riders have generated several million dollars for the scholarship through the American Legion Legacy Run and are also engaged in countless other charitable activities that contribute thousands of dollars annually to other national, state and local programs and charities for veterans, military families and communities.
Eligibility for the American Legion Legacy Scholarship is open to children of service members who died while on active duty following 9/11 as well as children of veterans who have been assigned a combined disability rating by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) of 50 percent or greater and served after 9/11.
For more information, you can visit their website at: Legion.org/scholarships/legacy. The American Legion Riders was first established as a local post program in 1993 at Post 396 in Garden City, Michigan. It has since grown to more than 110,000 riders and 2,000 local chapters worldwide.
The American Legion Legacy Run is one of the largest multi-state, multi-day, cross-country motorcycle events in the United States, with between 600-700 total registrants and 300-400 motorcycles participating each day in the six-day event.