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Annual Motorcycle Ride and Fundraiser for Fallen Soldier

JESSUP, Pa. -- Rows of motorcycles lined up at Jessup Hose Company No. 2. Many on hand were bundled up on this chilly September day, remembering Army Sgt. Jan Argonish.

"Our family is honored that everyone wants to keep Jan's memory alive as much as we do," Argonish's fiancee Talia Walsh said.  "It's not just about Jan. It's about who we're helping. Everyone comes out and helps us do that. It's a good thing."

Argonish passed away in August 2007 during an ambush in Afghanistan. He was only 26 years old. Every year since his passing, as a way to honor the 1999 Valley View High School graduate's life, a motorcycle ride is held in northern Lackawanna County. Money raised goes to a number of military organizations in the area.

"His name will live on long after I'm gone," Jan's father, Mike Argonish said. "We've helped over 54 families through the county veterans association just this year."

George Atkinson is a Vietnam veteran. When Argonish passed away, he helped escort his body back to his hometown, so this day is especially meaningful to him.

"It was a sad day for me," Atkinson remembers. "It hurts. When you're escorting a hearse down the turnpike in Pennsylvania to bring this man home, for what he did. He did the ultimate sacrifice for us. It's a sad moment and a proud moment."

Right around noon, the motorcycles fired up and hit the road. Just a few miles away from where the ride starts and ends stands a massive mural, dedicated to Argonish and all American soldiers.

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