There's going to be a loud rumbling making its way from Augusta into South Carolina on Saturday, with a 79-second moment of silence in the middle.
The second Never Forget Memorial Motorcycle Ride will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday. The ride is the second fundraiser of the year for Support 1, a nonprofit organization that provides post-trauma assistance to emergency responders.
During the ride, motorcyclists will ride in honor of the 79 first responders who have died in the line of duty in the CSRA since records have been kept, according Sgt. Chris Chavous of the Aiken County Sheriff's Office, who is also the founder of Support 1.
The event will begin at Wild Wing Cafe on Washington Road in Augusta, head down Furys Ferry Road into South Carolina and cross Lake Thurmond Dam for a brief rest stop at Pollard's Corner. There, the riders will have a 79-second moment of silence in memory of the 79 first responders who have died in the line of duty in the CSRA. The ride will then return to Wild Wing.
“It's not as much about the fund raising as it is about memorializing and celebrating the lives of those who died in the line of duty,” Chavous said. “This is our tribute to them.”
Last year's ride yielded 50 riders, a number that should be eclipsed this year.
“We've extended the invite all the way across the board to anybody that wants to join us,” he said. “We've gotten word it's going to be as high as 100 or 200.”
Anyone who would like to ride their motorcycle in the event can still join the fun. People still wishing to register should arrive at Wild Wing on Saturday between 9 and 10:30 a.m. The cost is $10 per motorcycle.
In addition to the ride, there will be festivities at Wild Wing before and after the ride, including live music as well as food and drink vendors.
Drivers should not expect any road closures, as the event will be police-escorted.
“We do it at a time where it's a minimal effect on traffic,” Chavous said.
For more information about Support 1 or Saturday's event, visit the event's Facebook page, or www.support1.org.
Teddy Kulmala covers the crime and courts beat for the Aiken Standard.