Video – 15th Annual Heroes Highway Ride Rolls Into Port Hope One Last Time

In Editor Choice, Local

Thousands of motorcycles road down the Highway of Heroes from Trenton to Port Hope one last time participating in the Heroes Highway Ride on Saturday, June 1, 2024.

The HHR has been taking place for the last 15-years and was the inspiration of Lou DeVuono.

“We’ve had a picture perfect day and I’m thrilled with the turnout,” DeVuono told Today’s Northumberland as motorcycles rode past on Queen Street.

The inspiration for the event came when DeVuono was standing on the bridge when, 98, 99, and 100th fallen soldier travelled along the Highway of Heroes after being killed in Afghanistan.

“The emotion was unbelievable on the bridge. You watch the procession go by and then think of the amazing outpouring of support, love and mourning by a Country for one of their sons.”

But then DeVuono thought about the ones who are still serving, the ones who come home and go back to Afghanistan.

“Where is there flag draped bridges? Where is there recognition? And that’s how the HHR was born.”

Looking back over the years DeVuono said he’s proud of what the ride has become and what it means to the veterans.

With the help of Dave Wilson and Brian Stacey who organizes the Port Hope end of the ride it all comes together each year.

“I find it to be very important the fact that the ride is about showing support for veterans and their families,” said Stacey.

“Today it seems harder and harder to show that support for veterans. It’s not the veterans that have passed in WWI or WWII, it’s about the veterans that are still here and their families.”

DeVuono said former Port Hope Mayor was a major help to bring the ride to Port Hope.

“Mayor Bob Sanderson just grabbed onto it and ran with it and we’ve had a home ever since.”

Sanderson was the emcee for Saturday’s event in Memorial Park and said the event was important each and every year for the community.

Sanderson remembers when DeVuono first came to Council asking to have the event in Memorial Park, Sanderson remembers council having differing opinions.

“Council did approve them and they’ve been coming here like it’s their home now. Having it in Memorial Park and having it consistently for the last seven years, it really has bonded us, not only to the military community, but to the group that’s providing all the support to the families.”

MPP David Piccini was at the event in Port Hope and was amazed at the turnout.

“It’s amazing that Port Hope is so supportive of this ride that brings motorcyclists from around Ontario to raise awareness that freedom is never free. As a proud patriot, a proud Canadian, I’m proud to see the turnout today.”

Nearly 2,000 riders set off from Trenton at 11 p.m. and thundered into Port Hope at 11:50 a.m.

Along the streets, families were sitting in lawn chairs on their front lawns.

On Robertson Street a Legion Honour Guard stood to welcome the riders.

DeVuono estimates there were approximately 4,000 people in attendance in Memorial Park.

“It was 15 lovely years and I’m happy that we’re going out with a really strong turnout.”

“I know a lot of people are sad that this is the last one – but it’s time to pass the torch. Time to let some new blood, new ideas come in and pick up the torch.

Pete Fisher
Author: Pete Fisher

Has been a photojournalist for over 30-years and have been honoured to win numerous awards for photography and writing over the years. Best selling author for the book Highway of Heroes - True Patriot Love

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