Veteran Appreciation Night, Kent Island, 9 Sep

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Ride Captain Report

Despite being notified at 1030 hrs. that the inclement weather would keep the Wounded Warriors at home, and washed out the cook-out, myself, Tim, and 3 others pulled the mission off.....and it was awesome! The rain we had experienced here stopped 45 minutes prior to rally time and with clearing skies and dry roads, we went directly to the Kent Island High School where we met the Head Football Coach (a Marine vet, himself) and were briefed. He graciously invited us to 'meet, greet, and eat' with the team. It was a great meal in the school cafeteria, catered by Adam's Ribs here on the island, and the young men were very appreciative, as were we.
     The revised game plan was to escort one KIHS alumni Iraq vet, one Wounded Warrior (who made the trek from Bethesda on his own!) along with the team, through a smoke machine and onto the field! All bikes present had mounted flags which made it cool. We made our presence known with some noise and when signaled, rode onto the track as the team ran onto the field from behind us. We rode in a modified V formation, slowly, around the track and lined up in a well-executed fan shaped formation in front of the grandstand (Tim's idea and nice job guys. I told you we didn't need practice!). The fans from both teams gave us a great applause. We then faced the crowd near the midfield sideline and presented the Colors during the singing of the National Anthem. After watching the first half from the VIP tent with a group of vets near the end zone, we paraded onto the field at halftime (nice job marching, guys!) and once again, presented the colors during the Veterans Appreciation Ceremony. The MD PGR was also mentioned. At the end, we stood through a 5 minute standing ovation from the crowd. I was very moving. As we departed the field with horns blaring before the game resumed, we were again mentioned and thanked by the PA announcer, and subject to another rousing round of applause.
     This mission was classic 'Semper Gumby' thanks to Mother Nature and other factors.....and anyone who thinks you can't make a big impact with as little as five members, is wrong.

Thanks: Tim Thomas, for the assist, Dave Campbell, and Bob Simonsen and Lou Kerdock who both made the trip across the bridge to join us.

Well Done!

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