Thousands of motorcyclists honor fallen soldiers

SEVIERVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Thousands of bikers rumbled through Sevierville on their way to Grainger County's Veterans Overlook on top of Clinch Mountain Sunday. It's their way of honoring the men and women who died protecting our country.

"When I was in Iraq deployed, we had four soldiers out of our battalion that died in combat," said Bill Nagy, one of the Smoky Mountain Thunder riders.

Nagy dedicated the ride to those heroes, and to everyone who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. So did Steve Simons and his son, Caiden Thurman.

"It's all about freedom," said Thurman.

And it's emotional at times:

"I cry, I'm not going to lie. I'm a grown man, but I get a tear. He's understanding what this is all about and he knows, at 7 years old, he's taught that it's the gentlemen and the ladies and everyone who fights for our country to keep him free, keep me free. And everybody comes out and has a good time," said Simons.

Before the Smoky Mountain Thunder riders drove off, they held a ceremony in front of the courthouse, complete with a wreath to honor the fallen soldiers.

"If it wasn't for the military, we wouldn't have the freedom to even be here today. So that's the bottom line," said Kelley Stout, one of the riders.

"The people who made the ultimate sacrifice have to be honored, and they can never be forgotten," said Sgt. Nik Vames, with the US Army.

Organizers hope with rides like this one, they won't be.


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