Patriot Guard Riders
The Connecticut Patriot Guard Riders started off this issue standing a flag line on Aug 11th for Edwin “Moose” Williams who served in the Navy aboard the carrier USS Bennington as an Aviation Electrician, working on twin engine jet fighters. Edwin was also a 35 year veteran of the Cheshire Fire Department, who delivered his urn to the funeral home aboard one of their fire trucks. This was a different mission that we won’t soon forget. His widow was walking into the funeral home when she tripped on the curb, luckily the Fire Dept. and EMTs were already there. Turns out she dislocated her elbow, shattered her kneecap, and tore some tendons in her arm. Needless to say, the burial was postponed and will be re-scheduled when she’s out of the hospital.
The next day, Aug 12th, several members attended the Annual Candlelight Ceremony of Remembrance at the Iwo Jima Memorial in Newington/New Britain. This copy of the Washington DC monument is definitely worth a stop if you’re anywhere near the area.
On Aug 13th, we had another Honor Mission in Oakville/Watertown for Roland Leduc, a TEC5 in the Army Air Corps during WWII, who served in the Southwest Pacific Theater. Roland was the father-in-law of CT PGR member Kevin Martin, and we are very sorry for his loss. After a two-week respite from missions, the longest I can remember, we had a Honor Mission in New Milford for John “Joe” William Falk, an Air Force veteran of 3 wars. Joe started out as a B-17 pilot during WWII, going on to serve during Korea and Vietnam, finally retiring as a Lt. Col. We were honored to be joined in the flag lines at the church and cemetery by several members of the Connecticut Cruise News Minutemen Riders. All of us working together to honor our veterans and their service.
On Sep 1st, multiple members made the trip up to North Adams, Mass for the Honor Mission for Michael DeMarsico II, an ARMY PFC who recently paid the ultimate price while serving in Afghanistan. This service was well attended by the community, along with PGR members from NY,VT,MA,RI,NH & CT. On the trip home, one group of CT PGR members stopped to eat. At the restaurant, an active duty soldier who had attended the funeral came over to their table to say “Thanks For What You Guys Do.” Made the 3 hour trip home a much more pleasant ride.
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)