ATV club places hundreds of flags on veterans graves

Published: May. 25, 2023 at 4:12 PM EDT
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TOWN OF GREIG, New York (WWNY) - The Black River Valley Four Wheeler Club placed hundreds of flags on veterans’ graves Thursday morning. It’s a 20-year-old Memorial Day Weekend tradition for both the club and the Brantingham community.

“It’s a tradition for this club to go out the Thursday before Memorial Day and put flags out by the graves of our veterans,” said Neil Pepper, past president of the Black River Valley Four Wheeler Club.

The Black River Valley Four Wheeler Club placed American Flags at 8 different cemeteries across the town of Greig. Two hundred flags will be put next to veterans’ gravestones, honoring the sacrifices made for their country.

“Many people lost their lives in the service, passed on, and we just want to pay our respect back to the people that served us,” said Mike Leviker, president of the Black River Valley Four Wheeler Club.

With the sounds of a bugle playing in the background, the club quietly lined the fields of Brantingham Cemetery with the stars and stripes of Old Glory.

“For us, this kicks off the Memorial Day Weekend maybe on a quieter note, as paying respect to our vets,” said Pepper.

Leviker says the annual observance is a way for the club to connect with the community while remembering those who served.

“We want to respect the environment, we want to pay back to the community, and this is what ATVing or your off-highway vehicle is all about,” he said.

“Go out and probably ride over the weekend, but this will stay in our minds,” said Pepper.

Each of the old flags removed from the graves will be brought to the American Legion for a flag-burning ceremony and proper disposal.