32nd Run for the Wall to Stop in Mt. Vernon

May 16, 2022

One mission, four routes. The mission of Run for the Wall is to promote healing among all veterans and their families and friends, to call for an accounting of all Prisoners of War and those Missing in Action (POW/MIA), to honor the memory of those Killed in Action (KIA) from all wars, and to support our military personnel all over the world.

After a two-year hiatus, the central route of RFTW will be once again stopping in Mt. Vernon, Illinois, to fuel and have lunch on Tuesday, May 24 , 2022. More than 300 bikes are expected to arrive in Mt. Vernon via I-64 to exit 95 at 10:50 a.m. where they will fuel their bikes at the Hucks located at 34th & Broadway. From there, they will stage in the Rural King parking lot and parade to Mt. Vernon Airport where a dedicated committee and students from several area schools will provide a fried chicken dinner and other amenit ies for the riders. A flag ceremony will be conducted by Mt. Vernon American Legion and Tina Ilbery will sing the National Anthem.

“So many people and groups come together to make this a great stop for the riders,” commented state coordinator for RFTW, Angela Schrum. “Dave Parkhill, Jerry Vance and Steve England are three individuals who work very hard to make sure we have everything needed for the stop. Mt. Vernon Airport are impeccable hosts, and the venue is ideal for the crowd. Our emergency services are integral in getting the riders in and through Mt. Vernon and Jefferson County safely. It is a genuine team effort and an honor to be a part of.”

Mt. Vernon is the only Illinois stop for RFTW each year. Funds are raised by the local volunteers to provide a fried chicken lunch and help pay for their fuel. These organizations, businesses and individuals have donated time, money, product and/or services to the event: Al Lemke; American Legion #141 Auxiliary Mt. Vernon; American Legion Mt. Vernon; AMVETS 169 Riders; AMVETS Auxiliary #4 Mt. Verno; AMVETS Auxiliary #148 Waltonville; AMVETS Post 148; AMVETS Turner Roehm Post 4; Angela Witges; Bonnie Café; Christian Motorcycle Association; Comfort Dogs; Community First Bank; Cusumano & Sons; Damron Insurance; David Parkhill; Domino’s Pizza Mt. Vernon; Farrington CCSD 99; Frosty Mug Bar & Grill; Hucks Fuel; Jefferson County Sheriff; Jefferson Fire Protection District; Jerry Vance; Joyce Parkhill; Kingdom Seed Ministries; Kroger; Kyle Price Foundation; Litton’s Ambulance; Margie Carrell; Mt. Vernon Convention & Visitors Bureau; Mt. Vernon Elk’s Lodge #318; Mt. Vernon Festivals, Inc.; Mt. Vernon Fire Department; Mt. Vernon Outland Airport; Mt. Vernon Police Department; Mt. Vernon Rotary; Mt. Vernon VFW Post 1376; Pepsi MidAmerica; Residential Living Center; Rural King Mt. Vernon; Schmidt Chevrolet; Steve England; Walgreens Distribution; Waltonville CUSD 1; Waltonville VFW Post 9153; Webber High School FFA; Woodlawn CCSD 4.

“It takes a lot of planning and organization to pull off the gas stop and lunch in the short time they are here each year,” Schrum continued. “But it is so worth it to show appreciation to these people who are honoring those who have served. I love to see the students who volunteer interact with the riders and gain a different perspective to their history lessons.”

Donations are still being accepted towards the fuel for the riders and also of Gatorade and flavor packets for water. They can be dropped off at the Mt. Vernon Convention & Visitors Bureau, 200 Potomac Blvd. between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Those who participate in the Run for the Wall can sign up to join the route at any point from California to Washington D.C. Many people ride the entire route, while others join the pack for a leg of the journey. Once they converge in D.C., riders are free to return to their homes via any route they choose.

The pack will leave the Mt. Vernon Outland Airport at 12:50 p.m. and travel east on Route 15 to Wayne City where they will get back on I-64 and continue their journey towards Washington D. C. for Memorial Day. We encourage anyone who can to line Broadway between 10:50 a.m. – 11:40 a.m. All times are approximate. Wave your flags and support the riders who say, “we ride for those who can’t.”

Travelers in Mt. Vernon May 24 during the time when RFTW is present should expect delays and authorities suggest taking alternate routes of Richview Road or Veteran’s Memorial Drive, when possible, between 10:50 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

More information about the entire Run can be found at: https://rftw.us/central-route-hub

All photos are 2019 event photos.

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