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Hundreds roll out for “Run for the Wall” motorcycle ride

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MILWAUKEE – Close to 300 bikers took to the highways Thursday, May 24th for a ride to remember the fallen and the military members who may still be missing in action. It was all a part of "Rolling Thunder's" annual "Run for the Wall."

Close to 300 bikers left Milwaukee Thursday morning and are headed to Washington D.C., riding through six states and over 950 miles in two days.

“We have a lot of veterans on the ride.  We have doctors, lawyers and dentists,” organizer Keneth Pezewski said.

The annual “Run for the Wall” event takes place Memorial Day weekend, with the final stop at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.

“It's really to remind people that we still have POWs and MIA.  They have to be brought home and this is the way to do it,” rider Susan Konopka said.

“These people gave up everything.  They gave their lives and they gave up having families and everything, so this is the least we can do,” Vietnam veteran Bob “Hogman” Thompson said.

This year, the Milwaukee chapter of "Rolling Thunder" had its biggest turnout yet, with an even bigger sendoff.  More than 900 students from Bruce-Guadalupe Community School cheered on the pack as they reached the freeway.  They lined the streets of 9th and Mineral waving American flags.

“I think it's actually inspiring because people in the Army risk their lives just for our country,” fifth-grader Arial Lopez said.

“I tell you, for being 68 years old, it brings a tear to my eye. They're there sending us off.  It's fantastic," Pezewski said.

This is the 25th anniversary of "Rolling Thunder's" freedom ride to Washington D.C. and the 20th year for the Milwaukee chapter to participate.  The bikers are expected to roll into Washington D.C. Friday night, May 25th.