LEE'S SUMMIT, Mo. -- Motorcycle riders from across the metro spent Sunday morning showing Kansas City support for fallen firefighters John Mesh and Larry Leggio. The pair died earlier this month while battling an apartment fire.
The owner of The Bar in Lee's Summit said he was sitting around having a beer with one of his bartenders when the idea came up for a rally and a ride.
"They're fallen heroes, and I think people jump in for that kind of stuff. They realize they put their lives on the line every day, and people jumped in did what they had to do," Rich Richmond said.
In just one week, Richmond said his staff and friends brought together quite the undertaking. "We had thirty volunteers this morning show up. It just went off without a hitch."
Five hundred motorcycles, nearly 1,000 riders, Richmond said, "We thank the city for letting us use this lot. We went and asked for a permit. They gave it to us, perfect deal."
Two different groups, each their own form of family. A ride to offer support and an unspoken understanding of grief and gratefulness, shared by both kinds of brotherhoods. "Firefighters kind of stick together and we stick together, and today we all came together."
Organizers said the number of riders who showed up more than doubled what was expected. All of the money raised from rider fees and a silent auction will go to Local 42, the area firefighter union, which has been coordinating all of the efforts for the Mesh and Leggio families.