Patriot Guard Riders
The Connecticut Patriot Guard Riders started off this issue with a pair of missions on Sept 5th. The first was a flag line at the Ground Breaking Ceremony on Ellington for a new home for Marine Corporal Greg Caron. The home is sponsored by “Building Homes for Heroes.” Last November, Greg was on patrol in Afghanistan searching known Taliban compounds, when he was severely wounded by an IED. He lost both legs immediately and received a critical wound to his right arm. The second mission on Sept 5th was a Honor Mission in Milford for Albert Beck. Albert served in the Air Force, then as a mechanic in the Air National Guard before passing at the age of 56 after a long fight with multiple sclerosis.
On Sept 11th, we had one of those missions we really enjoying attending, a Welcome Home in Moodus for Marine Lance Corporal Jake Mackenzie who returned home from Afghanistan. It’s always gratifying to stand alongside the townspeople when they come out to welcome their hometown heroes home. The next day, Sept 12th, we participated in the 10th anniversary celebration in Bridgeport for “Homes for the Brave.” Homes for the Brave provides safe housing, vocational training and job placement, mental health and addiction services, and life coaching to help individuals, especially Veterans, leave homelessness behind. Since opening in 2002, this organization has worked with more than 700 individuals.
On Sept 16th, we were honored to be asked to participate in the “CT State Firefighters Convention Parade” in North Haven, standing a flag line at the parade’s end under a garrison flag. On Sept 18th, we had another pair of missions. The first was a flag line at the arrival in Danbury of the “Dignity Memorial Vietnam Wall.” We only had a few PGR there to join the impressive showing of Minutemen Riders in the flag line on this rainy day. Most of the CT PGR members attended the Send-Off in Hartford for the 1048th Transportation Company (Medium Truck) and elements of the 2/104th Aviation Regiment, where the stands were packed with family and friends.
That’s it for the missions since the last CT Cruise News issue deadline. We hope we provided some peace to the familys of the heroes we paid our final respects to. As always, we invite you to come out and join us in our mission to honor this country’s veterans at their funeral services. Come out to one, grab a Flag and stand alongside us, experience the same satisfaction the rest of us do. You’ll be back.
Go to our website www.ctpatriotguard.org to check it out or to join up. (Article by Jay D Koonz)