Veterans ride for sacrifices of the past

(WEAU) - For generations veterans have made sacrifices for our country, some not even making it home.

What started out as an idea, became the First Annual “Freedom Isn’t Free” Memorial ride.

"It’s an honor to see something that's been put together that signifies who served in the wars. We have to have this, we have to honor the veterans," said National Guard Veteran, Edward J. Nayes.

About 30 motorcyclists traveled from Conrath to Ladysmith, while stopping at several veterans’ memorials in between. They traveled a total of 105 miles.

Micheal Beaulieu is just one Vietnam veteran that rode and he enlisted for the U.S Army when he was only 17.

"Went to Rice Lake an enlisted and you couldn't slap the smile off that recruiters face," said Micheal Beaulieu, U.S Army Veteran.

He was presented with an honorary plaque to remember his 13 months in Vietnam and 17 months in Germany.

"I think the total recognition belongs to all veterans from the first wars we fought to where we are now," said Beaulieu.

But others have families that served in past wars and they only needed that reason to ride.

"Being able to remember all the people who have died for our country and are still here who have fought for our country and giving us the freedom that we have," said Jackie Nitk, daughter of veteran.

"You cross a magic line in the cement right when you get to the wall and just goes quiet, just like that and that's when all the emotions come back. If they called me today and said Mike we’re going to go back I'd say where and when do we leave,” said Beaulieu.

If anyone is interested in joining this ride in the future, you can contact Edward J. Nayes at (715) 828-8771.