Bike Ride and BBQ to benefit area veterans

Motorcyclists are lined up and ready to go prior to the bike ride at a past One Call Away event. (Photo from One Call Away Foundation)

SOUTHWICK – The 4th Annual Bike Ride and BBQ to benefit One Call Away Foundation is July 20 at Whalley Park.

The motorcycle ride starts at 10:30 a.m. from the park and is a 70-mile ride with police escort. Riders are expected to return at 1:30 p.m.

The barbeque starts at 12:30 p.m. and features pulled pork sandwiches, chicken, southern style coleslaw and smoked baked beans.

Cost is $25 for a rider, $15 for a passenger and $10 for the barbeque only.

A First Responders Appreciation Parade kicks-off at 1:30 p.m. at Gristmill Plaza. Marchers will make their way from the plaza to Whalley Park where there will be free family activities. The Home Depot will bring its kids’ craft center, there will be pony rides, military assets, guest speakers and more to round out the day.

King Kountry will perform live contemporary country music from 12-1:30 p.m. followed by more country from Rattle Snake Alley from 2-3:30 p.m.

One Call Away Foundation is a PTSD support network for local veterans founded by Southwick resident David Sutton, an Army Infantry veteran. Sutton is a member of the Patriot Guard Riders.

According to its website, the mission of One Call Away is to directly affect the lives of veterans who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The foundation aids in PTSD awareness and to further aid in the prevention of veteran’s suicide.

The foundation wishes to help grow the general public’s awareness of PTSD, to further the aid in prevention of veteran’s suicide and to provide direct financial support when needed. One Call Away povides a hotline (413-367-8738) to receive calls from veterans in distress. Once contact has been made, the goal is to provide a risk-free environment by offering anonymous peer support on an individual and group basis and to be able to provide financial support for those in recovery.

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