The Memorial Ride has been on my mind, as well as the letter in the Sun-Gazette.
This year was the first for me to actually be on the route. I followed the column of bikes in our Fire Department's, Hummer, Brush Truck. I was amazed at the people along the streets. I've never seen anything like it. I was humbled by it all.
I saw the letter from Sue Richards today and her complaints about bikers and her being inconvenienced by the ride. I'm amazed at some people but, that's also a part of what the ride is all about Freedom! I wouldn't trade my freedom for anything.
During the 2010 ride, there was a group of Marines who came to the ride in up-armored Humvees to pay tribute to a fellow Marine from Williamsport who was killed in action. They told me all about their fallen brother and I also met his parents. I kept my composure for as long as I could and then I went into my office, locked the door, and just sobbed. I pulled myself together and went back outside and the fire engine from Trout Run showed up to line up in the procession and they placed their brother's turn-out gear on the front bumper of the rig with a picture of him. I lost it all over again. I met some of the family members and co-workers of the DEA Agent who was killed that year and they were all so appreciative that his service to our country was being honored during the ride.
Don't try to tell me that this ride is just an excuse for a bunch of 'posers' to go for a cruise, as was stated by someone else in the comments section.
I'd like for any of them to come to the Memorial service next year and watch the Korean War vets, who are all in their 70's and 80's, snap to attention and perform a 21 gun salute to the dead and then play taps and tell me this ride doesn't have meaning.
I'd like for any of them to come and listen to Father Manno talk about the Fallen Hero Cards while he is choking back tears and tell me this ride doesn't have meaning.
I'd like for any of them to come and see thousands of big, burly, bikers standing, holding hands during the prayers, with tears streaming down their faces and tell me the ride doesn't have meaning.
I'd like for any of them to have been there when a woman, whose family member was killed in one of the towers, handed Tank an American Flag with all of the names of those who died in the attack on it and see how that affected him and everyone who was present.
I'd love to see any of them come to the next ride and identify themselves to me. I'll grant them the opportunity to stand on stage, use their First Amendment Right, and say about how much they hate the ride.
And then I'll just sit back and smile while 5000 "posers" exercise theirs and drown the fools out.
Yeah...tell me again that this ride doesn't have meaning.
Submitted by Virtual Newsroom