Former President George W. Bush held his annual Warrior 100K bike ride Saturday to give back to veterans.

There are 2.5 million veterans who have served after September 11th, 2001, according to the Bush Institute's Military Service Initiative. Thousands of those soldiers have been injured during their service.

Three buses carried 52 soldiers to Bush's Prairie Chapel Ranch Saturday to the applause of dozens of volunteers. After spending some time with the former president, the veterans followed Bush though the trails of his Crawford ranch. The warriors traveled a third of the 100K on Saturday and will finish the trek over the next two days.

Bush said a few words before the veterans set out.

"I admire our veterans a lot. I tell the American people all the time, we are fortunate to have had citizens who are willing to serve. All of which got a Ph.D in life at a very young age, all of whom are going to make mighty contributions to our county," Bush said. "They have overcome a lot, and they are willing to share their experiences for the good of the country."