Multi-county bike ride, fundraiser honors Silven Yocum, deceased victim of domestic violence

MACOMB (WGEM) – Victim Services officials say a child must report abuse to an adult seven times before they are believed.

That’s why a group of bikers, families and advocates came together to honor Silven “Silvie” Yocum, who died of domestic abuse at the age of five on September 16, 2006.

More than 100 runners gathered at Macomb Elks Lodge on Saturday morning to raise awareness.

The event is to raise money for the Western Illinois Regional Council Community Action Agency’s Silvie’s Fund to help children who have been through what Yocum did.

Silvie’s cousin, Brett Yocum, was riding Saturday morning with more than 100 other participants. He said he looks forward to it every year.

“(I) hang out with good people, my family,” Yocum said. “And remember Silvie the right way.”

Yocum said Silvie was like a sister to him.

“One of the earliest memories I have is right before he died,” Yocum said. “The day before, we were on our trampoline. That was exactly what we were doing. I was six, she was five.

After the riders paid an entry fee, the Knights Motorcycle Riding Club took them on a multi-county ride.

“I think we had 100 bikes last year,” said Knights Motorcycle Riding Club president Jamie Cudd. “Over 200 people signed up. It gets bigger every year. »

WIRC-AA public relations director Jamie Roth said Silvie’s Fund raised more than $20,000 last year for Macomb Victim Services. She said they had high hopes of breaking that number this year.

“This is one of the biggest fundraisers for us,” Roth said.

Roth said the money they receive from rider admissions, silent auctions, meals and t-shirts is used to provide victims with the help they need.

“It goes directly to counseling and advocacy services, and all of our services are free to survivors,” Roth said. “So he is invaluable to the people we serve. And they can come back to the council all their life if they want to.

Roth said no child should go through what Silvie Yocum did, but sadly many do.

She said if you see something, say something. And call their victim services hotline at 309-837-6622.

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