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9/11 MEMORIAL RIDE: Day Four

On their way through the midwest, the West Pierce riders experience a "close encounter."

(Editor's note: , four firefighters from West Pierce Fire & Rescue are riding their motorcycles cross-country to New York for the 10-year anniversary of 9/11. They are providing daily dispatches to Patch)

Sorry we missed a day - no wifi at the campground/cabins in Sturgis

The pictures are out of order but they show the cabins and campgrounds where we stayed and move to pictures of our ride from Billings, MT to Sturgis, SD.

A couple of the pictures show a small diner we stopped at for lunch. The sign at the entry read the food is lousy - they were right! It was an interesting place with stuff hanging from the ceiling and every where else they could put it. At least it kept us distracted.

Then we rode off to see Devils Tower, made famous in the movie "Close Encounters of a Third Kind."

We had a group photo there but didn't see any aliens. Sorry Doug. We then rode through the black hills before arriving in Sturgis. The motorcycle group bought dinner at a local restaurant where we we joined by members of the IAFF-MG 6th district out of Canada.

We all hit the rode at 0700 for the 460-mile ride to Sioux City, IA. We lost another hour on the way. We were buffeted by high winds, we were all leaning to the right while riding, which looks kinda funny. I wish I had pictures, but riding at 75 mph in a side wind is not optimal picture-taking time. Travis left us for a night. His uncle and friend met us in Sturgis and he rode with them to Minnesota to visit family for the night. He will catch up with us in Ottowa.

When we arrived in Sioux City, we had an engine escort to their station where the campers are staying the night. They also hosted a get-together in a local Irish Pub. They had an Honor Guard and bagpiper plus a video of 911. I don't think there was a dry eye in the house. Thanks to them for a first-class reception.

We leave in the morning for Ottowa IL, another 450-plus mile day. Until then....

Capt. Greg Johnson

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