VALLEJO (CBS SF) — With the 20th anniversary nearing, a dedicated group of cyclists launched a cross-country bike ride Sunday to honor the victims and heroes of the 9/11 attacks.

The group of retired and active firefighters along with military veterans began their trek to the cheers of supporters in Vallejo.

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“They’re gonna ride their bicycles all the way across the United States. That’s amazing,” said Vallejo resident Toni Silva, who was among the crowd.

Along they way, they will be cycling as much as 120 miles a day to honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice on 9/11.

“Brooklyn here we come,” said San Jose resident and Navy veteran Gary Wiley.

Frank Walsh said aside from honoring the heroes, he hoped the ride who help heal the divided nation.

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“Over the last 20 years we’ve had that divide again and hopefully this ride will bring the nation together again,” Walsh said.

Firefighters and police from across the Bay Area give the riders an honor-guard escort.

“We are happy to help and do anything to help remember the heroes of 9/11,” said Walter Trujillo of the Vallejo Fire Department.

They’ll make stops at fire stations along the way, and reach Brooklyn to commemorate 9/11 with some of their firefighting brothers and sisters.

“The spirit of America goes on and that’s what those guys represent,” said Vallejo resident Pete Skehan.

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This is the second time the Bay to Brooklyn group will make the trip. Ten years ago, it was just two riders. This year more than 15 are riding either part of the way or all the way to New York.