The Patriots Flag Tour, hosted by the American Legion Riders, arrived in North Platte shortly after 1 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 14 at the 20th Century Veterans Memorial.

The flag was carried by a group from Sterling, Colo. Several motorcycle riders from Lincoln County went to Colorado Thursday morning to escort the flag into North Platte, where it was transferred to the American Legion Riders of Post 163 in North Platte.

The Patriot Tour is a ceremonial passing of the U.S. flag from club to club around the country. It spans 15,000 miles over 115 days. The flag is traditionally transported on the back of a motorcycle. This year, the flag was in Washington D.C. and was hoisted over the capital building.

Riders were escorted through the city by the North Platte police, and the fire department provided a large flag suspended from a fire truck at the veterans memorial. Mayor Brandon Kelliher was on hand to speak of the importance of the occasion.

The flag was on the last leg of its journey to Papillion, where the annual tour of all 50 states began on May 20. The Legion Riders took the flag out of North Platte on Friday, Sept. 15 and carried it to Grand Island. It reached Papillion on Saturday.

The tour has been held since 2009, launched by the Nation of Patriots organization. It honors past, present and fallen veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces, and 100% of the funds raised provides financial support to veterans and their families.

The tour has raised more than $1 million and provided assistance to more than 400 families since the first year, organizers say.

Passing the flag to a Post 163 American Legion Rider in North Platte. Photo by George Lauby

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