We staged at the Owens & Brumley Funeral Home 1317 9th St. Wichita Falls Texas at 4:45 p.m. 1-2-11. When I arrived there were others already there, This is Jimmy (black leathers) and Larry. I do not remember the name of the other PGR member by the 105th Anniversary Ultra Classic. Jimmy is a MSGT in the Army and is a disabled Iraq War Vet.
This is Cindy and Alice, Larry's wife. They, (Larry & Alice), ride a Harley trike but I think Larry said it was in the shop.
This is Brad. Brad is a PGR member out of Dallas and he rode up from Dallas Texas to attend this Mission. He told me he had to stop 1/2 way up and put on some warmer gear. As a matter of fact, the flag line for tonight and tomorrow morning would be inside of the funeral home in the main hall, due to the cold temps.
Here are, left to right: Laura, Larry, Alice, Jody and Katie.
Here are, from left to right: Gary T, Cindy, Ted (North Texas PGR Ride Captain) and Tex (North Texas PGR Ride Captain)
We headed inside at 5:30 p.m. and lined up. Here is Inez, Ted's wife, in the flag line.
This is Jimmy in the flag line. We served together back in the 80's when I was an SSgt and he was a PFC. He is now a MSGT. Thank you Jimmy for your continued service, dedication and sacrifice's you make while on your tour of duty.
Jody, Doug and Cindy in the flag line. Jody heads up Project Jody: A Cadence For Life, an organization that takes life's necessities to the Veteran's Hospital in Oklahoma City and other areas. Check this link out for more info: www.groups.yahoo.com/group/projectjody
Looking down the flag line to the entrance to the funeral home.
Looking at the flag line as it ends at the main visiting room
Inez and Ted. Ted is a Vietnam Veteran and a winner of the Bronze Star for actions he performed there. He & Inez are two of my all time best friends.
We finish for the night and head out to the bikes. It was starting to get cold out and the temps at 60 mph as we headed home on the bikes, would be very cold
Monday morning, 1-3-11, we once again staged at the Owens & Brumley Funeral Home. We staged at 8:45 a.m. and when I left the house it was 29 degrees. Here are, left to right: Ted, Jimmy, Gary F and Floyd.
We formed up and, again, lined the main hall of the Funeral Home with the flag line. This is Genivieve in the line.
When I went outside to go to the support vehicle for water, this is the view as more folks on bikes had arrived.
This Harley Ultra Classic belongs to Charlie. Charlie drove in from Archer City to attend today's Mission.
This is Kat. She is Genivieve & Larry's daughter. She is also an Honorary member of the Green Knights, Chapter 54 located here in Wichita Falls. For more on the Green Knights, see this link: http://www.greenknightsmc.com/
Th flag line as seen looking down towards the entrance to the funeral home. This is Nick, Kat's brother, closest to me.
This is Paul, Mike a.k.a. Papa and Doug.
This is Paul. He joined the PGR after attending this Mission. He is also a member of American Legion Post 202 located here in Wichita Falls. For more on the American Legion Post 202, see this link: http://www.americanlegiongreen-piercepost202.com/
Cindy in the flag line.. She is the daughter of one of my training officer's back in 1977, Bill Baker.
When the services started, those of us going to the Cemetery, walked out to the support truck to put up our flags. Here Gary and Doug walk to the truck
Here we are furling the flags for the trip to the cemetery
Furling the flags at the support truck
Furling the flags in the morning sun.
The bikes with the big flags would escort the hearse to the cemetery and the rest of us would already be at the cemetery, with the flag line in place. We would circle the outside of the grave site. Here is one of the big flag bikes with members still furling their flags.
My bike parked in front of the big flag bikes
We get ready to leave the funeral home and head out to the Crestview Memorial Park. For more on Owens & Brumley Funeral Home, see this link: http://www.owensandbrumley.com/
Here is PaPa as he gets ready to gear up and head out. PaPa is the Vice President of the Wichita Falls Chapter of BACA. For more on BACA and what they do, see this link: http://www.bacaworld.com/
Here are Gary T & Jimmy as they stand by Gary's bike.
This is Floyd. He has started riding with us recently and is a riot to be around. The man has a sense of humor and I will not mis-label him "Gary" again on the blog. lol
Another pic of PaPa at the Crestview Memorial Park, right after we arrived.
Here is a picture of Larry's family at the cemetery: Left to right: Nick, Larry, Genivieve and Kat. They are great folks and I enjoy their company. Kat always makes cookies for us on runs. Why? Because being on the darkside means we have cookies!! I can't get enough of my extended biker family.
Members of the USAF Honor Guard, station at Sheppard AFB, located on the North side of town.
Here are, from left to right: the NCOIC of the Honor Guard, Laura, Paul, Kat (wearing her Green Knight colors), and Cindy. Picture was taken at the gravesite before the Funeral Procession arrived.
The NCOIC of the USAF Honor Guard.
Here is Floyd joking around with us. He was telling us either a Fairy Tale or a War Story. All you Vets out there know the difference. If anyone wants to know the difference and doesn't know a Vet to ask, feel free to email me.
This is my good friend, Louis. He is Doug's Brother-in-law. He is a frequent rider with us North Texas Bikers.
The flag line as we circle the gravesite of MSGT Gerald Smith at the Crestview Memorial Park in Wichita Falls Texas
This is Gary F, Gary T. and Ted in the flag line at the Crestview Memorial Park. If you are interested in joining the ranks of the Patriot Guard Riders, (it's Free!), just go to the PGR site at www.patriotguard.org and sign up. That's all there is to it. You don't need to a Veteran or even own a motorcycle to be a PGR member. If you want to honor our Military Veterans, both active and retired ,and show them the respect they have earned and deserve, by standing a flag line with us, then the PGR is for you.
Gary T and Ted in the flag line. For more on the Crestview Memorial Park, see this link: http://www.crestviewmemorialpark.com/
The Interment over, we walk back to the bikes. Here is Kat.
The last picture on the post is of Kat and her Green Knights Chapter 54 colors. This will conclude this post.
It was an honor to be able to attend this PGR Mission and to honor this true American Hero. It was good to be there with my PGR brothers and sisters and, as always, it was good riding with them. Our condolences go out to the family of MSGT Gerald Smith.
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Continue to pray for ALL of our troops both in and out of Harms Way, especially for Che Whitaker and Chris Drage, both of whom are serving in the Afghanistan Theatre of Operations.
Until next post, ya'll be carefull out there, keep the rubber on the road, keep your head on a swivel and most importantly of all.......RIDE SAFE..............JOHN