WOODLAWN — The Ninth Annual J. Kyle Price Memorial Ride will be held Saturday, April 26, and organizers are hoping for a large turnout.
In the past, the ride has drawn as many as 258 participants. Last year, it rained on the day of the event, but even with the bad weather nearly 150 people took part.
Marine Lance Cpl. J. Kyle Price of Woodlawn passed away at the age of 19 while serving in Iraq. He died in January 2006, after being fired upon near Ar Ramadi, Iraq.
John Hunsell of Woodlawn, Price’s stepfather and the ride’s co-founder, said the event has grown into a major celebration honoring not just Price but all those who serve in the military.
The ride is also an annual fundraiser for the Kyle Price Memorial Foundation.
“It brings awareness to the people who have served past and present, and (those who) will serve in the future,” Hunsell said. “It’s to honor them and bring awareness to why we have the freedoms that we do.”
This year’s ride is sponsored by Dale’s Harley Davidson and all “street legal” vehicles are welcome. Primarily motorcycles take part, but cars and trucks are allowed as well, Hunsell said.
The ride will be led by the Leathernecks Motorcycle Club, which is made up of former and current Marines.
The first memorial ride took place three months after Price’s death in 2006.
Rachel Hunsell of Woodlawn, Price’s younger sister, was only 14 at the time of her brother’s death. She said having the annual ride has been therapeutic for Price’s family and the community as a whole.
Those who take part in the ride are dedicated and loyal, she said, and come to the event “rain or shine.”
“The dedication that we see is just overwhelming,” Rachel said. “It’s wonderful to see the community continue to come together and that they haven’t forgotten my big brother.”