CORONAVIRUS: STRONGER TOGETHER

Fallen Soldier Memorial Motorcycle Run Honors Six Utahns

Jul 15, 2020, 8:43 PM | Updated: Sep 18, 2020, 10:13 am

NORTH OGDEN, Utah – A caravan of motorcycles followed a torch into North Ogden to honor six fallen Utah military men.

For the 11th-straight year, the Fallen Soldiers Memorial Torch Motorcycle ride is making its way across the country to Arlington National Cemetery in Washington D.C.

This year, the ride rumbled into North Ogden, one of the planned stops.

This isn’t the first time James Hammon showed up at one of these events.

Not even close.

Whenever some type of patriotic event takes place near North Ogden, Hammon is there to make sure American flags fly proudly. 

“I think I counted the other day. I think I have done 19 missions,” said Hammon, who is with the group Follow the Flag. “I think I have missed one or two is all.”

The flag means a lot to him.

“You know, the red, white, and blue therapy is powerful medicine,” he said. “You can’t deny it.”

‪The Tribute to Fallen Soldiers Memorial Torch Motorcycle Ride across the country to Arlington National Cemetery just pulled into North Ogden. Six military members who died while serving are being honored here. We’ll have a story on this for KSL 5 TV at 5 and 6 🇺🇸‬

Posted by Alex Cabrero KSL on Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Wednesday afternoon, he really needed that therapy.

“The flags do that for me. Whether it’s the corona or how disgusted I am with the attitudes of people or my own misery dealing with my son’s death,” said Hammon.

This event at McGriff Park in North Ogden was to honor his son, Jared Reaves, who died while in the U.S. Coast Guard.

The event honored five other military members and their families from this area. 

They are:

  • Major Brent Taylor, Army Sgt. First Class
  • Clint Ferrin, Army Sgt. First Class
  • Elliott Robbins, Army Sgt. First Class
  • Michael Pursel, Corporal
  • Jeremiah Pluim, Private First Class 

“Moments like this, when we remember, we’re celebrating. We’re not celebrating the fact that they’re gone, we’re celebrating the lives they lived,” said Jennie Taylor, whose husband was killed in Afghanistan in 2018. “Not only are we not forgotten, but we’re not alone.”

Each family was given a memorial plaque and a special thank you speech to let them know their loved one’s sacrifice is appreciated.

For Hammon, it was a reminder there is good in the world.

“It‘s healing,” he said. “It really is healing.”

The families will also be honored in Washington, D.C.

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Fallen Soldier Memorial Motorcycle Run Honors Six Utahns