TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - Good people, good times, and great Jeeps! On Saturday, hundreds of people filled hundreds of Jeeps to canvas the Wabash Valley for the Second Annual 'Going Topless for Pink' Ride. These folks are members of the Wabash Valley Jeep Junkies. They come in all shapes, sizes, and ages.
Going Topless for Pink Ride Co-Organizer, Mike Latta, explains, "You know, jeep people are kind of a rare breed. They'll have their top and the doors off whether it's 40 degrees out."
This is the second year for the ride. This year's headquarters was the Hoosier Aviation Hanger. The day started off with a ceremony including the pledge of allegiance, a moment of silence for fallen THPD Officer Rob Pitts, a prayer by News 10's Rondrell Moore, and a time for everyone who played a role in the event to be thanked.
Latta adds, "It’s awesome to see all these Jeep people come out and support a great cause like PINK of Terre Haute."
Junkies pay a registration fee and are given a map. They go to various locations throughout the Wabash Valley such as Show Me's or the Ballyhoo. They complete their maps by hitting each designated stop. Then, they're able to enter to win many prizes.
One of the stops that's special to the group is the Pizza Gallery, where a balloon release was held. It's a time for those taking part in the ride to honor their loved ones who are fighting, or lost their fight with breast cancer.
As far as fundraising goes, Latta says they're on track to beat last year's total of $17,000 dollars. This obviously means great things for PINK.
Co-founder and President of PINK of Terre Haute, Darren Brucken, says, "PINK is a volunteer-driven breast cancer charity here in the Wabash Valley. We participate with patients and families in about a 9 county area. We basically meet any unmet need without us. Whether that's financial, spiritual, social, anything that would go unmet without our help we try to chip in and help those folks out."
While not every jeep junkie could take part from behind the wheel, Latta says that doesn't mean they missed this year's ride.
Latta says, "Rick Bagnoche's wife, Amy, she was one of the founders of PINK, and I know that she's kind of looking down and helping us out with the weather and the crowd and smiling down on the group and PINK of Terre Haute too, to help us, and I think she would be proud of you know, what's happened here today."
If you'd like to learn more about the Wabash Valley Jeep Junkies, click here.
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