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Print

9-11 bike riders to stop in central Illinois Tuesday

August 21, 2011 at 12:44 PM

The State Journal-Register

Springfield city officials will welcome cyclists from the Ride for 9-11 organization with a reception Tuesday at Firehouse No. 1 in downtown Springfield.

The bicyclists, all from the Los Angeles Fire Department, are en route from L.A. to New York City to honor those whose lives were lost on Sept. 11, 2001, in the terrorist attacks.

The goal of the ride is to honor the public servants who lost their lives on Sept. 11 by raising money for the Leary Firefighters Foundation and the Wounded Warrior Project.

The riders left Los Angeles July 23 and are expected to arrive in Springfield in late afternoon Tuesday after leaving St. Louis earlier in the day. The reception is scheduled for 5 to 7 p.m. The public is welcome to attend.

The group’s aim is to arrive at the FDNY Firefighters Memorial on Sept. 9.

“I am honored that the firefighters from the Ride for 9-11 have chosen to make Springfield a part of their journey,” said City Clerk Cecilia Tumulty, who along with Mayor Mike Houston, Treasurer Jim Langfelder and members of the city council are expected to be on hand.

Tumulty said she has asked all the city’s elected officials to donate to the Ride for 9-11 cause.

“The more important thing is to help get the word out,” she said. “They’ve been planning this ride for months and months.”

“We are excited to help our fellow firefighters in this project,” said Springfield Fire Chief Ken Fustin.  “When they called, there was no question that we would help them out.”

Several Springfield firefighters, including Fustin, traveled to New York City to volunteer following the Sept. 11 attacks.

Tumulty and Houston will present the riders with a proclamation from the city and host a small reception for them.  Members of the city fire and police departments also will attend.

Ride for 9-11 has six full-time riders and several more who ride portions of the route.

For more information on the Ride for 9/11, visit http://www.ridefor9-11.org.

Chris Dettro can be reached at 788-1510.

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