As the pipes played and motorcycles made their way to Cheshire, a spirit of togetherness filled the air.
Local fireman, police, neighbors and over 700 people from all across the New England-area gathered at Bozzuto's in Cheshire for what’s being called a Hero's Ride.
"One hundred percent of the funds are going back to The Benevolent Fund to help out the victims, the fallen, as well as the injured that have occurred over the past few weeks," said McKenzie Doyle, Events and Marketing Manager of the Hometown Foundation.
After the death of firefighter Ricardo Torres Jr. and the injury of Samod Rankins while responding to a fire last month on Valley Street, Doyle said they knew they had to do something.
"One thing we need in this world is community. We have community in New Haven. We’re feeling it in New Haven county right now in Cheshire," he said.
Captain Timothy Papp said the past few weeks have been a time that no one wants to repeat, but the support means the world and that his fallen fellow firefighter Ricardo Torres Jr. will not be forgotten.
"Moving forward we never can forget them or the other ones we lost either. Events like this and the support of everybody makes a little easier to deal with that," said Papp.
And as the countless motorcycles made their way onto the road, for many, the meaning of the rides were personal. "My dad and my uncle are retired firefighters and my cousin is an active fireman in the Hartford Fire Department," said Jennifer Bartiss-Earley.
"I think it’s really great to support families that have fallen firefighters because I know if I was in that situation, I would’ve needed the support," she added.