Tom Henschke believes everyone can remember where they were and what they were doing on September 11th 2001. “I can hardly believe it has been ten years,” said the SMC Business Council President. To memorialize the tenth anniversary, Henschke and his company are organizing the “Let’s Roll Flight 93 Memorial Ride” September 10th and 11th.
“Flight paths” of 40 motorcycle riders will launch from cities across Pennsylvania and Virginia September 10th and then rally at the Seven Springs Resort in Somerset County the morning of September 11th. From there the riders will head to the Flight 93 memorial in Shanksville. “We did coordinate this with the flight 93 memorial,” said Henschke, “We actually have former Governor Tom Ridge as the honorary grand marshal, a number of family members will be there as well.”
The ride get its name from the last known words of flight 93 passenger Todd Beamer who was heard by his wife to say “lets roll” just before he and other passengers tried to retake control of the plane. The concept of 40 riders comes from the number of innocent passengers on the flight from Newark to San Francisco.
Ultimately the ride is about raising money for the flight 93 memorial. Each ride will find sponsors to donate at least $1,000 to the memorial fund. “Individual riders can find sponsors, an owner of a business [can] gather money and do some fundraisers among employees for a rider,” said Henschke, “You don’t have to be a rider, you just have to work together and accumulate $1,000 and find a rider.” Individuals can also donate online.
Henschke says the goal is to add more “flight paths” to the eight already planned. (Two from Erie, and one each from Pittsburgh, Williamsport, Meadville, Cranberry Township, Pottsville Philadelphia, and Fairfax, VA) An organizing kick off event for the Pittsburgh flight will be held Thursday night from 5:00 – 6:30 at Jerome Bettis’ Grille 36 on the north shore. Individuals are asked to RSVP at the Lets Roll Ride web page.