Riding with Tribute to the Troops

Posted May 18th, 2014 by EtURNal Ride

Being a veteran, I am probably a little biased on my posts. On facebook, twitter and even this blog, I want to cover all kinds of topics and interests. However, I feel like the many of my posts have a military feel to them. I’ll admit that a lot of the things I follow and read up on have the same theme. One of my favorite things to keep tabs on, are the military motorcycle groups. Across the country – the world – for that matter, there are groups of riders who make supporting the armed forces a part of why they ride. Many of these riders are veterans and military members as well.

The Tribute to the Troops Patch

I’m proud to have met, and ridden with, a great group, called Tribute to the Troops. They are a national organization that started out of Minnesota, and now have chapters in Illinois, Oregon, and North Carolina as well. 2 to 3 times a year, this group meets for rides where they visit the families of soldiers, who died fighting for their country.

Their mission statement reads as follows: “Tribute To The Troops is an organization of grateful Americans dedicated to preserving the memory of those men and women of our nation’s military who lost their lives while bravely protecting our freedom. It is in their memory that we honor and convey our heartfelt gratitude to family and friends left behind and extend our sincere appreciation to all veterans who have served, whether in war or in peace.”

The idea behind these visits is to remind those families that long after the sacrifice has been made, they have not been forgotten. Tribute to the Troops presents each family with a token of thanks and supports the families through scholarships for children of veterans and other ways.

Before the ride, I had time to meet many of the riders. This included veterans, family members of soldiers who had died serving

A rolling memorial

One of the many custom painted bikes, in honor of the fallen.

their country, and others who wanted to support the cause. The day was filled with riding, great conversation and amazing stories of heroism, sacrifice, and a chance to get to know about those we were honoring that day. The families we met were incredible and while they were grateful for the visit, I think many of us were grateful for the opportunity to get to know them and show them how much their soldiers mean – not just to them, but to us as well.

Meeting the Families A display of thankfulnessI know beyond Tribute to the Troops there are many other organizations out there with the same purpose. I encourage you all to get out and participate in these events if you get a chance. Riding in its own right, doesn’t need a reason other than getting out and enjoying the trip. Riding with a group like this provides a special purpose and chance to connect and support our heroes. For everyone, it is a win-win.

For More information on Tribute to the Troops, please check out their website:
www.tributetothetroops.org

DSC_0181