The three said individuals don’t have to be veterans to ride with the Patriot Guard Riders, but they must have respect for those who serve. If asked, Patriot Guard Riders will shield the families of fallen soldiers from protesters that might interrupt their loved ones’ funerals, Warren explained.
Patterson said veterans share a unique brotherhood. He said his military service helped him understand the challenges his soldier son faced upon returning from a second tour in Afghanistan.
“He was concerned about relating to his family when he returned home,” Patterson said.
Warren said he and other Patriot Guard Riders sometimes volunteer at the Atlanta VA Medical Center.
“We sit around with them (wounded warriors) and hear them talk,” he said. “It’s part of our Help on the Home Front program.”
These Patriot Guard Riders joined about 50 other riders – including a significant number of lady bikers – in the museum parking lot for the 80-mile benefit poker run across north Georgia.
Debbie Jackson of Rossville donned a bright pink helmet for the ride. Jackson rides with Bikers on a Mission, a motorcycle group affiliated with Oakwood Baptist Church in Chickamauga.
“Any time we can get together with fellow riders for a good cause we do” she said.
Bikers on a Mission will hold a Celebrate Recovery Card Ride starting at noon on May 12, Jackson said. That ride will benefit Oakwood Baptist Church’s Christ-centered recovery program for people “with hurts, hang-ups and addictions,” she said.
Before the riders departed, museum executive director Chris McKeever thanked them for participating.
McKeever also announced a new memorial garden plaque would be dedicated on May 20, during the 112th annual 6th U.S. Cavalry Veterans Association reunion. This plaque will honor four Army aviators who were assigned to the 4th Squadron, 6th Cavalry Regiment of the 16th Combat Aviation Brigade at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington state, she said. The aviators died during a training exercise last December when two OH-58 Kiowa helicopters crashed. McKeever said she believes one of the fallen, Capt. Anne Montgomery, was the first woman the 6th Cavalry had lost in the line of duty. The other three heroes were Chief Warrant Officers Joseph Satterfield, Frank Buoniconti and Lucas Sigfrid, according to thenewstribune.com.
A plaque to honor 6th Cavalry soldiers who died in Iraq was dedicated during a memorial service in 2009, she said.
For more information, visit 6thcavalrymuseum.com.