Remember the Removal Bike Ride to kick off


L to R) Blake Henson, Hestin Lamons, Paige Carnes, Noah Collins, ride instructor Chad McCarter, Sarah Holcomb, Carter Copeland, Jon Ross, Ben Keener, Joseph Keener, Latasha Atcity, Lane Holcomb and Marshall Smith.

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – Fifteen Cherokee students will spend the next three weeks retracing their ancestors’ footsteps along the Trail of Tears, which this year marks the 175th anniversary.

On Thursday May 30 at 10a.m.the Cherokee Nation will host a send off for the 2013 Remember the Removal Bike Ride participants at the W.W. Keeler Tribal Complex, 17675 S. Muskogee Ave. in  Tahlequah.

The students will ride more than 950 miles on bicycles, beginning in New Echota, Ga., and follow the northern route Trail of Tears through Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri and Arkansas, ending June 21 in Oklahoma. The ride was started at the Cherokee Nation in 1984 so Cherokee youth would never forget the hardships of their Cherokee ancestors who made the same trek on foot. Of the estimated 16,000 Cherokees forced to make the journey to Indian Territory, an estimated 4,000 died due to exposure, starvation and disease. The Cherokee Nation also joins others riders from the Eastern Band of Cherokees for the ride. Follow the journey on

The 2013 riders include the following:


Benjamin Keener, Rogers State University

Joseph Keener, Northeastern State University

Lillie Keener, Abilene Christian University

Noah Collins, Verdigris High

Fort Gibson

Blake Henson, Fort Gibson High


Marshall Smith, Tahlequah High


Haydn Comingdeer, Sequoyah High

Robert Ketcher, Eastern Mennonite University


Hestin Lamons, Tahlequah High

Paige Carnes, Tahlequah High

Jon Ross, NSU

Latasha Atcity, NSU


Carter Copeland, Jenks High


Lane Holcomb, Sequoyah High

Sarah Holcomb, Carl Albert State College

Cherokee Nation News Release

Julie Hubbard - 918-207-3896
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