MILITARY & MOTORCYCLES_NOVEMBER 15, 2013 | Born To Ride Motorcycle Magazine - Motorcycle TV, Radio, Events, News and Motorcycle Blog


Published on November 15, 2013 under Born To Ride LifeStyle


Veterans Day

Last week I was somewhat overwhelmed by my schedule and it showed. I made a mistake and had Veterans Day posted as Thursday, I was happy several of my readers pointed that fact out to me. Now I know people do read my column and I thank each and every one of you for doing do.

Last Wednesday twelve Patriot Guard Riders, all of whom were veterans met at Dan Nolan Middle School at Lakewood Ranch to spend time with the students prior to Veterans Day. We were able to talk with them individually and we also displayed our motorcycles inside the school cafeteria. What a great bunch of young people as well as their teachers and staff.

On Thursday I attended the Legacy of Valor Luncheon at Dolphin Aviation which was put on by the Sarasota and Manatee Junior League to pay tribute to area veterans and active-duty service members for their military service. It was also to raise awareness of the year-long Legacy of Valor campaign.

The key note speaker was Keni Thomas (Sgt.) a decorated combat veteran of the 75th U.S. Army Rangers Regiment Special Operations Unit. Keni was a Sergeant during the ‘Black Hawk Down’ mission in the 1993 Battle of Mogadishu.

His perspective of that eighteen long hour battle to save the lives of those who had been shot down was stunning.

Today Keni is a singer, songwriter, author and motivational speaker. For more regarding Keni go to

The beneficiary for the luncheon this year was Southeastern Guide Dogs Inc. which is located in northern Manatee County at

4210 77th St. East, Palmetto. For more information call 941-729-5665 or go to their website

This week I will be a volunteer photographer for the Sarasota Chalk Festival. The theme of this year’s festival is ‘Legacy of Valor’ which is part of the Patterson Foundation in the Sarasota area with endowments to honor veterans, inspire patriotism and to embrace freedom’.

Estimates are around 250,000 people will come and view the street art this year. For more information please go to

Manatee County Veterans Council again hosted the Veterans Day Parade. The parade left from the Manatee County Fairgrounds and moved southward down 10th Street to Sutton Park.

It was my honor to escort Sandy Beckley who represents the Patterson Foundation (Legacy of Valor). I was her escort back in 2009 when she was the Grand Marshall of the Veterans Day Parade in Bradenton. For a short video on Sandy go to

During the parade I ran across my wife Sue, son Travis and my grandson Trenton. Trenton is seen holding his hand over his heart and holding an America Flag in the accompanying photo.

Should you have any comments and/or suggestions please email me at

Have a great weekend and remember; “It’s not about the war, it’s about the warriors.”

God Bless America and all those who serve to protect us.


Waiting for Poppy


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