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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Live Love Remember Wreaths Across America Ride - TX

October 30, 2010
Colorado, USA

Wichita Falls, TX -- Dad and friends, Nubbin and John rode to Little Elm, TX today for the 1st Annual Motorcycle Ride To Purchase Wreaths For Every KIA At DFW National Cemetery (part of the Wreaths Across America Campaign) dubbed as the Live Love Remember Ride.

Wreaths Across America Ride BuddiesNubbin, Ted (Dad) and John

Wreaths Across America (www.wreathsacrossamerica.org) is a non-profit organization that places wreaths at veterans and fallen heroes graves during the Christmas Season. Our Goal is to contribute to this organization and make sure every KIA grave from Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom at the DFW National Cemetery receives a wreath this Christmas. The actual Wreath laying is on December 11 with a ceremony at 11am. The last day to sponsor a wreath is Nov. 23.

Dad suited up in full leathers, riding out before first light. It was a cold morning in Texas. After meeting John at the shell station, they rode to Bowie where they met up with Nubbin. Only the three of them would ride to Little Elm for this event.

According to John, 49 motorcycles rolled out on the ride. They did not go on the 45 minute ride. Rather, they waited for Stormy and the boys to arrive. Stormy (my daughter) and four grandsons drove a short way from Frisco, TX to say hello to Dad and friends. After visiting for a while, the three motorcycle buddies rolled out on a ride to a BBQ place Stormy told them about in Tioga, TX. Then they ambled their way home. Nubbin and Dad made an ice cream stop at the DQ in Henrietta before heading home. John had a commitment so he passed on the ice cream.

It looked like a great ride, despite the chilly start. By the end of the day, they had shed leather jackets and rode under sunny skies.

Here's a slide show of a few photos that John shared with me ( 33 photos):

More photos and commentary about this ride can be found on John's excellent motorcycle blog, North Texas Bikers.

Source: North Texas PGR

Saturday before Halloween ride

October 30, 2010
Colorado, USA

Fort Collins, CO -- Saturday ride... Tomorrow is Hallowe'en. We have guests coming so tomorrow will be spent in preparation for that, but today we ride. And a fine Fall day to ride it was.

As usual, we rode out with no agenda. We made a quick stop at the dollar store in the small town of Windsor for a couple of relish items. There, we found ourselves in the midst of hundreds of trick-or-treaters collecting candy from Main Street merchants. We watched the munchkins for a short while, then I snapped pictures as we rode out of town. We found ourselves winding our way up and down country roads for most of the afternoon. Some of the roads were familiar, some were not. We rode through some small towns we have not visited before, found a BBQ place in Mead and a museum in Platteville that will bear a second look sometime this winter while we are stuck flat-landing it.

Eventually we found ourselves in Lyons where we made our usual stop, then took the loonnngggg way home, riding in about dusk -- just in time to light the Hallowe'en display.

Slide show (25 photos):

Friday, October 29, 2010

Friday off ride

October 29, 2010
Colorado, USA

Snow in the high country Fort Collins, CO -- Friday Off! And, despite the chilly start, it turned out to be a beautiful day. We rode out under high, thin clouds in our heavy jackets about noon. By the time we got a couple of towns over, the day had warmed and we came out of our leathers. Today, we could see the mountains beyond the foothills glistening with fresh snow. Winter has arrived in the high country.

We took the long, lazy way over to the Borders book store I like a couple of towns over and spent some time and a few dollars there. Books - that's what I usually go for on my birthday. I guess I don't have much imagination. I made the book store run yesterday, but Tim was determined to extend the celebration. I have to mention I was wearing my new Harley-Davidson birthday hoodie and belt while we were out and about today. Tim surprised me later with a Jack Skeleton journal and bookmark he purchased while I was browsing. Afterwards, we roamed through a junktique store without buying anything.

By early afternoon, we were hungry so we finished the day off with an excellent meal at Ruby Tuesdays before moseying on home.

Slide show (8 photos):

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Birthday ride...

October 28, 2010
Colorado, USA

Vik - birthday 2010 Fort Collins, Co -- A fun birthday starts out with a surprise package from the Folks full of really nice things like a new Harley Davidson belt (with just the right amount of bling) and a new Harley-Davidson hoodie.

I loved hearing my 99 year old Grandma sing me the birthday song. Then there were cards and calls, emails and FB notes from family members and good friends.

Last year it snowed on my birthday so while it was chilly today, the sun was shining and I was happy to see it. The day finally warmed into the 40s. I got a Harley Ride to Vern's for lunch with Tim. Afterwards, I had the whole afternoon free to stroll through the book store... and that's exactly what I did. A couple of them even came home with me.

Later, I'll have a super-duper sized cupcake and ice cream when Tim gets home... add to that a three day Hallowe'en weekend with weather good enough to ride and I am all smiles...

Just a short slide show (8 photos):

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Happy Anniversary - #56

October 26, 2010
Colorado, USA

Nezzie and Ted celebrating 56 years of marriage today!

Happy Anniversary Folks!

Here are a few photos of the folks out and about this year... and I'm betting they are not sitting around the house today... they are out there having fun somewhere.

And here is a reminder of how you got here Folks! (reposting from last year)...

Happy 55th Anniversary Ted & Inez - 2009!
Click here to play

Sunday, October 24, 2010

PGR Meet and Greet - Wichita Falls, TX

October 24, 2010
Colorado, USA

Wichita Falls, TX -- Today Dad (Ted/Frosty) and Mom (Nezzie) attended the Patriot Guard Meet and Greet in Wichita Falls, TX. The event included a picnic in Lucy Park, speeches, recognition ceremonies and more.

Dad's RideDad's Ride

A good turnout

Friends Angela and Nubbin - Gold Star Parents

Dad enjoying the PGR Meet and Greet

John - PGR Ride CaptainCongratulations to Friend John (aka Snapshot) who shares many of his photos with me. He has made PGR Ride Captain.

Read more about this event and see lots more photos on John's North Texas Biker Blog

Gray skies, Gray waters ride

October 24, 2010
Colorado, USA

Gray skies... gray waters...Fort Collins, CO -- We waited seemingly forever this morning for the temps to break out of the 30s and then the low 40s... Finally, we just pulled on the leathers and rolled out intent on getting some sort of ride in today, no particular direction in mind.

We traveled familiar roads under a weak sun around a couple of the lakes. We still have some color in the trees along the northern front range but tomorrow's forecasted freeze and the high winds that are supposed to follow should finish them off. The mountains beyond the first hump (the foothills) were obscured by snow clouds. We had gray skies and gray waters.

We rolled over 15,000 miles on the Harley today just 4 days shy of six months.

Boo BrewsBOO BREWS -- As usual, we polished the day off with a couple of beers in front of a fire on the patio.

Here is a slide show of today's ride (25 photos):

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Trick or Treat or Ride

October 19, 2010
Colorado, USA

Two of my favorite things - Hallowe'en and the Harley... does it get any better than this?

Hallowe'en and the Harley

Taken Saturday... just before a great Fall ride...

Monday, October 18, 2010

PGR Mission - Welcome Home Soldiers

October 18, 2010
Colorado, USA

Wichita Falls, TX -- Patriot Guard Riders - Welcome Home Soldiers!

That's my Dad in the yellow shirt... Welcome home soldiers! Thanks for all you do.

Welcome Home Soldiers!
Welcome Home Soldiers!

Lookin good Laura

Dad, Laura, John
Three of my favorite people Dad, Laura and John

PGR Standing the flag line
Standing the flag line

More photos and a rundown of this mission can be found on John's Motorcycle Blog North Texas Bikers

Source: KAUZ TV: http://www.kauz.com/global/category.asp?c=179967&autoStart=true&topVideoCatNo=default&clipId=5208813&flvUri=&partnerclipid=

Saturday, October 16, 2010

PGR Mission - PFC Cody Board

October 16, 2010
Colorado, USA

McKinney, TX, Wichita Falls, TX, Lawton, OK:

This is how every soldier and veteran should be remembered and honored. Everyone I spoke with said they were honored and humbled to be part of this Patriot Guard Mission. Dad (Ted) said there were bikes as far as you could see stretching across the Texas/Oklahoma border, and people on the sides of the road with signs and flags, and flags flying and people saluting and waving from overpasses. He said he will never forget this mission.

Over the space of a few hours and across a couple of hundred miles, on the gleam of chrome and metal, in the rumble of engines, in the flags that caught the breeze and on the faces that lined the route PFC Cody Board traveled -- the light of unity and liberty and all that is best about the United States of America and the people who honor and revere and serve her burned brightly. Rest in peace soldier - you will not be forgotten.

Slide Show #1 posted by North Texas Patriot Guard (James Carlile):

PFC Cody Board Arrival Mission - 10-15-2010

Slide Show #2 posted by North Texas Patriot Guard (James Carlile):

PFC Cody Board Visitation Mission - 10-15-2010

Slide Show #3 Posted by North Texas Patriot Guard (James Carlile):

PFC Cody Board’s Funeral, Procession To Oklahoma, And Interment - 10-16-2010

Source: US Fallen.org - Memorial Video The welcome home video and a good article about this day is posted here as well. Thanks to Jerry Castillo for caring and sharing.

Source: KAUZ TV, Texomans Honor Fallen Hero

Friday, October 15, 2010

A wrong righted... now let's fix the whole darn bucket of wrongs...

October 15, 2010
Colorado, USA

As I posted yesterday... the Toll Road issue for the funeral procession of PFC Cody Board has been resolved. This particular soldier will find his way home down a free road just as it should be in the United States of America.

Disrespect for those who serve in the Military, those who serve and protect us on main street and especially our Veterans should be challenged each and every time it happens.

There is a code most of us live by, a code that knows the difference between right and wrong and when something is wrong that code tells us to step up and make it right. That's what Patriot Guard Riders do. That's what people who take the time to honor a Veteran's passing do. That's what America is - a country founded on principles that make things "right". When Americans band together in a common cause to do the right thing -- good things happen. It makes me proud.

I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do. -- Helen Keller

What follows is a letter written by Deputy State Captain, Mike Lambert of the North Texas Patriot Guard Riders, as always eloquent and succinct.

North Texas & Oklahoma PGR

I would like to pass along the latest update on the Oklahoma Toll road situation. After numerous telephone conversations conducted by myself and Don Papin (Oklahoma PGR State Captain), we were unable to persuade the Toll Road Authority to waive the charge to the family for their sons Funeral escort on the toll road. At that point we posted the e-mail to the riders to share the news that the Patriot Guard Riders would handle this toll fee.

The Patriot Guard Riders as an organization does not take a position on judicial, legislative, or political issues. We represent families from many different views; and though part of our mission statement is to shield our families from protests, free speech is something we hold dear as well.

You the individuals, the riders and the many new friends of Pfc Cody Board stepped up and started the phone calls and e-mails to State Representatives, Senators, and Congressmen, Face Book, the Internet and calls to the local and national media. The positive nationwide response was incredible and the showing of support was tremendous.

Within hours of the posting of the email, there were individual riders, private companies and private individuals from around this Nation stepping up and offering to pay the fee. One e-mail came from a man in Washington State who offered to pay the toll himself rather than see the families face this lack of respect. Support also came from the Oklahoma Highway Patrol Association, the officers themselves offered to pay this toll fee.

Due in large part to your response to this injustice, the Director of Transportation for the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority has now offered to pay the toll himself. He advised us that his phone lines were tied up for over six hours with people calling to voice their anger over the disrespect shown to the family of a fallen soldier.

The charging of a toll for the funeral of a soldier who has given his life for this country is being waived for this one young man.

The problem still exists for the next fallen soldier; there is still a need for changes nationwide, other states, including Texas also charge the families of fallen soldiers whose funerals uses a toll road. Public funds build these roads, and the public need to step up and change the rules. Respect needs to replace greed.

Please remember the people who work the toll roads are Americans who are supporting their families and are only following the rules made by someone higher up the ladder. We need to give these people our respect.

I would like to personally thank all of those who offered to help in this situation and to the hundreds who e-mailed their concern and support in this matter.

The Lesson we have learned in the last three days is:

“If we all give just a drop, we can fill the bucket.”

Mike Lambert
Deputy State Captain
North Texas Patriot Guard Riders

Ride safe PGR!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

PGR Mission - Wichita Falls, TX: Tucker

October 14, 2010
Colorado, USA

Nezzie (Mom) standing the flag line for Vietnam Vet Wichita Falls, Tx -- Nezzie (Mom) and Barbara (PGR Senior Ride Captain) meet at the Allendale Baptist Church to stand the flag line for SP/4 Joe Tucker, US Army, Vietnam Veteran, Age 66.

Ted (Dad) and other Patriot Guard Riders arrived later and just in time to honor this veteran after completing another mission earlier in the day.

Dad rides in after completing two PGR Missions today

Source: North Texas Patriot Guard

THIS POST REQUIRES ACTION! In a world of wrongs... this wrong could be made right

October 13, 2010
Colorado, USA

UPDATE: 8:35 pm Mountain Time - just received this notification from a Texas Patriot Guard Ride Captain... The Toll issue has been resolved. Word somehow got out across the country and the Oklahoma Peace Officers Association said they would pay all the toll on Saturday. Then the funeral home received a phone call from an individual in Oregon offering to pay the bill, then an Oklahoma State Legislator found out what was happening in his State and said the issue will be resolved. It came down to the Director of the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority called the funeral home and said "come on through our toll system, I will take care of the cost."

It is amazing when phone calls start coming into every person that our group can think of to call, what can happen. Score one up for both the OK PGR and NTX PGR mission accomplished on this issue. Great job to all members of our PGR community and thank each of you for the services you render for our Fallen Heroes and their families.

A young soldier... fallen in the service of this country - our country will make his way home in a few days. He will travel through Texas and Oklahoma to Fort Sill, OK.

Sadly, this soldier who has given his all for US (the country, our country, you and me) has yet one more due to pay. His loved ones who have sacrificed their most valuable asset for US will also pay yet another price.

The Oklahoma Turnpike Authority has advised the Patriot Guard Riders who will escort the soldier and the family that each vehicle in the Funeral Procession will be charged a $1.40 toll fee, including the Hearse and Family car. Oklahoma Turnpike Authority does not make concession for the funerals of fallen service members. Why the hell not?

The father of this fallen hero has offered to pay the toll bill for the escort. The Patriot Guard Riders I know would never allow that to happen. The Patriot Guard Riders will take up donations to cover the expense and hopefully approach the toll gate with a lump sum in order to ride on through the gates without having to stop the procession.

It is not the $1.40 cents per vehicle - it is the time required for each vehicle in the funeral procession to stop and pay that is wrong. The family of PFC Cody Board or any other service man or funeral should not have to suffer the disrespect and embarrassment of the delay caused by each vehicle having to pay a toll in what will likely be a lengthy procession to honor their son on his final journey.

U.S. Fallen.org has the right idea - let's start with Oklahoma... and then find out if this same thing is happening on toll roads in your state. We need to DEMAND RESPECT for our soldiers and veterans - because bureaucrats will not. It is shameful!

Fallen Warrior's Funeral Procession Denied Free Access on Toll Roads in Oklahoma: http://www.usfallen.org/2010/10/14/fallen-warrior’s-funeral-procession-denied-free-access-on-toll-roads-in-oklahoma/

PFC Cody Board: http://www.usfallen.org/2010/10/07/pfc-cody-board-19-kia-returning-to-n-texas/
Please join us in a phone campaign to the governor of the great state of OK and the appointed bureaucrat of the OK Turnpike Authority to demand they do the right thing and allow all families of fallen warriors a free pass on their turnpikes.

Office of Governor
Brad Henry, Governor
Telephone: (405) 521-2342
Hours: Monday – Friday 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. CST
Web form contact: http://www.gov.ok.gov/message.php

Oklahoma Turnpike Authority
Tim Stewart, Deputy Director and Chief Operating Officer
Hours: Monday – Friday 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. CST
email: otapublicrelations@pikepass.com

And, if this is happening in your state - let me know.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

PGR Meet and Greet - Childress, TX

October 10, 2010
Colorado, USA

Dad Wichita Falls, TX - Dad (Ted) and friends ride to Patriot Guard Meet and Greet in Childress, TX for a little companionship, patriotism and food. Looks like a fun time.

The following photos compliments of John "snapshot" Bailey of North Texas Bikers (an excellent Biker blog)

Dad and Mike


Dad, Mike, Tex

Dad and Angela, Joe and Sherrie

Now, we're rolling

Great shot John

I think they call this perspective - ha!

Great time, good friends and a ride makes for a great day

Dad and Nubbin

Look for more great photos of this Meet and Greet Ride at: North Texas Bikers (an excellent Biker blog)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

'Tis the Spooky Season

October 9, 2010
Colorado, USA

Biker Witch 2009

Click here to play October is my season. Me and a few of my friends agree if Hallowe'en could be a month - we would make it so. As it is, I celebrate Octoberween. So, I spook up the house, but not without a nod to one of my other favorite activities - riding the Harley... Haunting our abode is coming right along and with any luck when Tim gets home from work there will be plenty of time for a real ride...

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Making the Cover of Thunder Roads

October 5, 2010
Colorado, USA

Joe & Sherrie -- Thunder RoadsFriends Joe and Sherrie make the cover of Thunder Roads - leading the Texas HOG Rally parade...

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Busy weekend -- Toy Ride Sunday

October 3, 2010
Colorado, USA

Fort Collins, CO -- We had one of those fall down in your chair Sunday evening, can't move another muscle busy weekends - just the way we like it...

Saturday: We had a cold, gray start to the day so we lingered over our coffee. Just before we stepped out the door to tinker around (about noon), I decided to check my email. There was a note dated Friday evening late from our friend David. He said he had closed on his new house Friday afternoon. Sure 'nuf, when we called, he and his girl were trying to load a U-Haul truck by themselves. So! That's how we spent our Saturday.

Race for the cure - Denver Sunday: We rolled out of here this morning at 7:30 am, under clear skies with temps hovering around 40 degrees. Last night dipped into the 30s for the first time this year. It was a chilly ride, but we were dressed for it so it was OK. The most we suffered was cold faces and fingers. As we were riding through Denver, we passed under the overpass where Race for the Cure people were crossing over the interstate. I mentioned to Tim, my niece Kimberly is up there somewhere. She runs in memory of my aunt and her mother-in-law.

By the time we parked the bike in Colorado Springs, we were ready to start peeling off layers, counting ourselves lucky in the weather. Skies were clear. It was getting warm. Winds were light. Last year, we rode in a Toy Run out of Loveland, CO. this same weekend. Temps were in the 30s heading out. By the end of the run, temps had dropped into the mid 20s and we had snow/sleet on the way home. Brrrr....

Santa and Me The gathering for the 23rd Annual High Country Toy Run was large (we are estimating over 1000 bikes). We were immediately greeted by young Marines in full dress uniform, handing out USMC Toys for Tots ride pins. The Marines thanked us for attending. We thanked them for their service. This Toy Run will benefit children of soldiers stationed at Fort Carson and others who benefit from the Toys for Tots campaign in the area. On our way for a cup of coffee, we met Santa who stopped long enough to pose for a photo and asked the age old question. Have you been a good girl this year? What do you suppose was my answer? Actually, I said... Of course Santa! When he chuckled, I commented further... That's my story and I'm sticking to it. Opening ceremonies included the pre-ride information, presentation of the colors, the national anthem, a moment of silence for those in the service of the country, a prayer and recitation of the pledge of allegiance.

Tim salutes the flagJust a proud moment for me as my guy saluted the flag... lots of Veterans were in the crowd today

This is Maggie May, decked out in her hoodie and wearing her ride pin. She rode in the Toy Run today.

Scooter rider The man who rode beside us (his name escapes me) rolled up on a scooter. He was talking before he got to a stand still. He asked what was the prerequisite to ride. I told him - you need a toy. He asked if I thought they would take cash instead. I said I reckon they might. After Santa got the man squared away with what looked like a sizable cash donation, we chatted with him for a good while. He said he had been riding motorcycles since 1951 (had plenty of fun stories to share) but finally just got so old and decrepit he couldn't get his leg over or lift a real motorcycle anymore. He said that scooter could go fast enough to get a speeding ticket so he figured he could keep up. He did. The man did not meet a stranger that day, either. He was having a great time. As it turns out, several scooters joined the lineup. I'd have to call this toy run a huge success. One rider showed up pulling a trailer filled to overflowing with toys. Others showed up with huge stuffed animals strapped on... some were purchasing raffle tickets by the hundred count.

Toy Run

Toy Run

Toy RunRiders were very creative, bikes were decked out with tinsel and stuffed with toys. Riders wore Santa hats and other Christmas gear which made the affair festive and fun.

The ride itself was perhaps a bit slow (it ran about 20-25 mph), most never got in third gear. That's slow for air-cooled Harleys in warm weather but it wasn't a long ride so most of us managed well enough. We had motorcycle policeman stopping traffic - that sure helped. The Colorado Springs Police Department officers did an outstanding job. The ride took us from the parking lot of a Harley-Davidson dealership, out Garden of the Gods Road to 31st St aka Colorado Ave through Old Colorado City to downtown Colorado Springs. Lots of people gathered to cheer us on as we rode by. Others were a captive audience, stuck at lights, stop signs, street corners and trapped in shopping centers until we all rode by. I imagine some people were trapped for at least the better part of an hour. I am hoping most of them know how much we appreciate their patience. We delivered our toys downtown near a night club called Cowboys. Lunch at Cowboys was steak and chicken for $7 (which would also benefit Toys for Tots) but the line was long and the day was just too pretty to be standing around.

Toy runI do not have the official number on the turnout, we guessed over 1000 bikes showed up...

toy run - rolling outRolling out down Garden of the Gods Road - Pikes Peak in the background

Arriving downtown Colorado SpringsBikes strung out behind us as we arrived in downtown Colorado Springs

We handed off our raffle tickets to a young person and rode to The Mason Jar and had lunch. Tim had chicken fried steak. I had catfish. It was good. Then we piddle-farted (that what Dad calls it) our way home, staying just ahead of storm clouds that looked like they could roll over the foothills any time (they never did) and rolled into the driveway about dusk.

We put a polish on the day and the weekend by building a fire in the chiminea and spent the rest of the evening on the patio with our feet up and a beer or two or three in hand, feeling fairly pleased with ourselves.

What a great day! Today's ride was 306 miles. Fall has come to Colorado so our riding days are numbered, especially for long rides. We are still keeping our fingers crossed for a looonnnngggg Indian Summer.

A slide show of today's Toy Run follows (78 photos):

It's going to be a great day for it

October 3, 2010
Colorado, USA

High Country Toy Run

Happy Birthday Charlie!

October 3, 2010
Colorado, USA

Happy Birthday CharlieWishing you all the best the day can bring... hopefully it's a good day for a ride in Texas!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Smokey the Bear Motorcyle Run - Joy, TX

October 2, 2010
Colorado, USA

Dad-Smokey the Bear Run Wichita Falls, TX -- Today Dad (Ted) and friends (about 50 or so riders) rode out on the 2nd Annual Smokey the Bear Run which benefited the Joy Volunteer Fire Department.

The ride was about 130 miles and according to Dad, fun. Later, Dad and a good many other riders would ride to a fish fry in Bluegrove. Mom (Nezzie) and my Aunt Alice drove over to the fish fry in Bluegrove. They report the food was really good. I bet.

Yeah - catfish... that sounds soooooooooooooo good.

Slide show photos compliments of John "snapshot" Bailey (22 photos):