Raleigh, N.C. — More than two dozen wounded veterans bicycled Friday from Cary to Raleigh on the third leg of the 2012 North Carolina Warrior Ride.
The ride is meant to help service members recovering from their injuries. Many suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injuries, and are part of Fort Bragg's Warrior Transition Battalion.
Warrior Ride founder Bob Racine said the event, which covers about 30 miles a day, is part recreation, part rehabilitation and a great morale booster. Racine, a veteran of Vietnam, said it is his way to honor the current generation.
"The main thing is it's for our troops," Racine said. "This is a means of saying thank you to them for what they have given.
"I sort of made a promise that if I retired and there was ever any type of war again that I would try to do something special for our wounded warriors," he said.
Racine said riding and rehabbing together helps all the wounded get well. "When you get 10, 12, 20 wounded soldiers together, they seem to be able to share their injuries, their treatment, and what they're doing to get better," he said.
The riders were greeted by schoolchildren in Cary and by First Gentleman Bob Eaves at the State Capitol. It was a morale boost appreciated by Sgt. Stacy Bernard. "This is my first ride, and I will say it's been very welcoming, very therapeutic, I'm blessed to be here."
The tour ends Saturday with a ride in Fayetteville. That leg is open to the public for a $25 donation. Riders will start at 7:30 a.m. from Covenant Love Church on Dunn Road.