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Bikers rally for IVH staff, residents

T-R PHOTO BY THOMAS NELSON - A motorcycle rider and his passenger ride to the Iowa Veterans Home with American Flags waving.

More than 50 motorcyclists revved their engine through the Iowa Veterans Home Sunday morning.

In a contrast to the protests and turmoil around the country a group of motorcycle enthusiasts rode the grounds of the Iowa Veterans Home to pay tribute to its staff and residents. They sought to recognize the hard work and dedication the staff has shown during the COVID-19 pandemic and pays its respects to the veterans housed in the facility.

“It is so wonderful that the community is supportive of the long term care facilities and the Iowa Veterans Home in particular,” said IVH Commandant Timon Oujiri. “I could not be prouder of the staff at the Iowa Veterans Home. They have kept COVID-19 at bay.”

Only seven residents at IVH have tested positive for COVID-19 and four have recovered.

“The staff has done a fantastic job,” Oujiri said. “We are way below the national average of long term care facilities in the positive cases.”

The group rode through Sunday at 11 a.m. started near the 13th Street entrance with American flags either held by riders or attached to their bikes.

There wasn’t one motorcycle organization that decided to ride, instead the group formed from Marshalltown and Marshall County residents who enjoy their motorcycles and appreciate their community’s veterans and the staff that cares for them.

The ride is a way to maintain social distance and continue to represent their support.

“They are doing this for the residents and the staff for all of the hard work that is going into protecting the veterans,” Oujiri said.

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Contact Thomas Nelson at tnelson@timesrepublican.com

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