Published On: Mon, Jun 24th, 2013

Remember the Removal riders finish journey

The 2013 Remember the Removal Riders tackle the last hill on their journey as they ride into Tahlequah, Okla. On Friday, June 21.  Shown at left is EBCI rider Joey Owle.  (Photos by J.D. ARCH/Commerce Intern)

The 2013 Remember the Removal Riders tackle the last hill on their journey as they ride into Tahlequah, Okla. On Friday, June 21. Shown at left is EBCI rider Joey Owle. (J.D. ARCH/Commerce Intern)

By J.D. ARCH

COMMERCE INTERN

 

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – The 2013 Remember the Removal Bike Ride is one that none of the team members will forget. The Riders left New Echota, Ga., the last capital of the Cherokees, on Monday, June 3 at 8:30 am on the road following a northern route to Tahlequah, Okla.

EBCI tribal member Yona Wade is congratulated at the end of the Remember the Removal Ride by Cherokee Nation Deputy Principal Chief Joe Crittenden on Friday, June 21 in Tahlequah, Okla. as Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker looks on.

EBCI tribal member Yona Wade is congratulated at the end of the Remember the Removal Ride by Cherokee Nation Deputy Principal Chief Joe Crittenden on Friday, June 21 in Tahlequah, Okla. as Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker looks on. (J.D. ARCH/COMMERCE INTERN)

The team comprised of 22 riders, 15 from the Cherokee Nation and seven from the Eastern Band of Cherokees. EBCI riders included: Yona Wade, Hillary Smith, Joseph Owle, Elias Huskey, Marvel Welch, Kate Cooper and Tighe Wachacha.  Cherokee Nation riders were: Benjamin Keener, Blake Henson, Carter Copeland, Hayden Comingdeer, Heston Lamons, John Ross, Joseph Keener, Christian Carnes, Lane Holcomb, Latosha Atcity, Lilly Keener, Marshall Smith, Noah Collins, Robert Ketcher and Sarah Holcomb. They started the three-week journey that would take them through seven states and over 950 miles.

Four bikes had to go into the shop for the riders to continue and the number of flat tires was too high to count. On Thursday, June 20, the day before entering Tahlequah, the team had over eight flats with several bikes having multiple flats.

The ride ended with the team arriving in Tahlequah on Friday, June 21 at 10:30 am.  They were led by EBCI tribal member Marvel Welch and Cherokee Nation citizen Sarah Holcombe. Welch had a birthday the day before coming into Tahlequah and this was Holcombe’s fifth time to make the journey from Georgia to Oklahoma.

Among those that welcomed the riders into Tahlequah were Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker and Cherokee Nation Deputy Principal Chief Joe Crittenden with various members of the Cherokee Nation Tribal Council. Both Chief Baker and Deputy Chief Crittenden spoke at the arrival ceremony giving praise and adoration to the riders and their families for support. 

The riders are shown at the start of their journey.  Shown (left-right) at the top of sign – Joey Owle, Joe Keener, Hilary Smith Gallegos, Sarah Holcomb, Haydn Comingdeer, and Marshal Smith; standing middle – Elias Huskey, Hestin Lamons, Ben Keener, Marvel Welch, Yona Wade, Blake Henson, Jon Ross, Carter Copeland, Lane Holcomb, and Tighe Wachacha; seated – Lillie Keener, Noah Collins, Kate Cooper, Paige Carnes, Robert Ketcher, and LaTasha Atcity.

The riders are shown at the start of their journey. Shown (left-right) at the top of sign – Joey Owle, Joe Keener, Hilary Smith Gallegos, Sarah Holcomb, Haydn Comingdeer, and Marshal Smith; standing middle – Elias Huskey, Hestin Lamons, Ben Keener, Marvel Welch, Yona Wade, Blake Henson, Jon Ross, Carter Copeland, Lane Holcomb, and Tighe Wachacha; seated – Lillie Keener, Noah Collins, Kate Cooper, Paige Carnes, Robert Ketcher, and LaTasha Atcity.  (Photo by Lee Ann Dreadfulwater/Cherokee Nation)

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