On Friday, July 21st, for the 10th consecutive year, thousands rode through the streets of Babylon alongside proud veterans to support wounded service members. This year’s event had over 1,500 riders participate alongside more than 50 wounded Veterans, raising roughly $90,000. Since the first Soldier Ride in 2008, over $750,000 has been raised for injured service members. The Town of Babylon is proud to announce that 50% of the funds raised at this year’s Soldier Ride with go directly to Suffolk County United Veteran (SCUV), a project of the Association for Mental Health and Wellness. This year a check for $85,000 was presented to Jenifer Silva, Wounded Warrior Projects Chief Program Officer from the Town of Babylon.
This year’s ride kicked off at the Babylon Town Hall. Town of Babylon Supervisor Rich Schaffer welcomed the veterans and riders to the event and spoke of how proud we are of all our veterans and participants. Adam Faine, the Wounded Warrior Soldier Ride Manger, presented Matias Ferreira with an official Wounded Warrior Cycling Jersey and he was also presented with a Proclamation from Supervisor Schaffer. Mr. Ferreira, a former Marine who lost both legs in Afghanistan, became a Suffolk County Police officer in March of 2017. Wounded Warrior Spokesperson and Veteran Jeremiah Pauley spoke to the crowd about the struggles veterans face when returning from combat. Mr. Pauley was deployed to Tal Afar, Iraq where he was injured by an improvised explosive device (IED) which sent shrapnel into his right arm above the elbow. Also speaking were Councilwoman and Veteran Jackie Gordon and County Executive Steve Bellone.
The Wounded Warrior Project provides services to service members, in both the United States and internationally, who have been injured during combat and works to raise awareness regarding issues that affect them as they continue to adjust to their new life.
Pictured from left to right are Councilwoman Jackie Gordon, Wounded Warrior Project Chief Program Officer Jennifer Silva, and County Executive Steve Bellone.