GAUTIER, MS (WLOX) - If you were in Jackson County Saturday you probably saw a large group of bikers riding around town. These bikers are from across the coast, and they came together to pay tribute to 9/11 victims and those soldiers still at war fighting for our country.
More than 60 bikers from Louisiana to Alabama showed up in Gautier on their motorcycles ready to ride. This was not just any ride; they were taking on this journey to honor all the lives that were lost so tragically during the horrible events on 9/11.
"We have not forgotten them or their sacrifice," organizer Steve Hoffman said.
Steve Hoffman said although that deadly attack on America happened 10 years ago, a lot of men and women are still over on foreign soil putting their lives on the line every day.
"We want people to realize the reason why we are in Afghanistan and the reason why we are in Iraq of what took place on September 11, 2001," Hoffman said.
Before bikers hit the road for the patriotic ride, they collected thousands of dollars in donations to provide care packages for those soldiers.
"We had a guy drop by with a half of truck load to go into the care packages," Hoffman said.
"I have just been told by some of the soldiers that have come back recently that it means a lot to the soldiers to get packages from home," organizer Debbie Stoddard said. "Just to know that the people back home appreciate what they are doing and care about what they are doing."
After unloading the truck of goodies and collecting money, the crew revved up their engines to ride.
"Start them up," Hoffman told the crowd of bikers.
As each bike rolled through Jackson County, many participating said they wouldn't want to be anywhere else but here. The bikers said they will continue to pray for the families that lost loved ones and the troops to helping keep us safe.
"What I do is nothing compared to what these guys are up against every day and every night. I couldn't imagine being able to sleep through mortar rounds being fired off," Pascagoula Police officer Terry Scott said. "It is just important to let them know we still love them, and we still think about them."
So far, the bikers have raised more than $2,000 and collected several hundred pounds of goods for the soldiers.