Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Patriot Guard Riders



The five men above and one woman below, are members of The Patriot Guard Riders. I met them on Jan. 3, 2008 exactly 8 years from today. They came roaring in off the street on their bikes as we all stood and watched.


I asked her what the Patriot Guard does, since I had never heard of it. I was shocked when she said we go to military funerals to protect and guard the family of the deceased. I said from What? She said we are there to protect them from protestors and groups of protestors who go to military funerals to interrupt and heckle the families.  They are there to help with whatever the families might need.


Their mission for the day.... Give free rides to any and all that wanted one. They came to the health care facility where I volunteered. The residents that chose to ride were all above 80 years old and several were in their mid 90's. My mission was to document the ride and make a movie for them to watch. 


You can find their mission statement on the national website.. PatriotGuard

I Madly Messed UP. today post should have been the answer to yesterday post about where and when and why I took photos of Sonic skaters and the hotdog....COMING SOON the right post will appear.

To be continued............

18 comments:

Ginny Hartzler said...

Oh my goodness! It is a sad world that even NEEDS these fearless people. They are doing something that there isn't even a job or job description for. They are providing a service that I guess no one else does. Wonder if there are some for each state? I have learned something so cool today! Grave hecklers beware!

diane b said...

What is the world coming to that we need such wonderful people to do that job.

Golden Woofs! SUGAR said...

Wow, it's interesting ...
BTW: love your new blog header :-) Lots of Golden Woofs, SUGAR

eileeninmd said...

Hello, I can not imagine people protesting at any funeral. Much less a military funeral. That is just disrespectful. I have never heard of this group the Patriot Guard, but thankfully they are there and ready to help.

Have a happy day and week ahead!

Gayle - venturesinphotos said...

A service of honor to be sure.

Madi and Mom said...

MS THEY WERE RECENTLY HERE IN OUR COUNTY FOR A FUNERAL. IT IS A SAD STATE OF AFFAIRS WHEN A FAMILY IS BOTHERED AT SUCH A TIME BY IDIOTS WHO KNOW NOTHING ABOUT PATRIOTISM OR LOVE OF COUNTRY AND LOYALTY!!!
******************************************
MOL MOL MOL MOL WE ARE LAUGHING OUR HEADS OFF. MS YOU ARE TOO FUNNY
ABOUT THE POST BEING ON THE WRONG DAY.
hUGS MADI AND CECILIA

Debby@Just Breathe said...

That is very nice of them.....

Felicia said...

a wonderful organization.

SweetMarie said...

I had no idea that there are protesters at some military funerals..how ridiculous and sad. this group is absolutely wonderful! God Bless them for helping people in a time of loss.

Mevely317 said...

I'm sort of familiar with these riders, but didn't recognize the name right away. Their mission makes me want to do a fist pump here where I sit. Plus, that's SO cool they wanted to give 'your' seniors a thrill. :)

BTW, my home computer crashed and burned last night. Until we find a replacement, I may be hit-and-miss on Blogland. These fat fingers and my e-reader aren't exactly compatible.

Ann Thompson said...

How sad that a group like that is needed. Anyone who would go to a funeral for the purpose of haraßing the family is about as low as they come. This sounds like à great group of people

Gail said...

It was a good post. I wish there were more people like this group.

Rose said...

I had not heard of them but remember protestors making the news before. Just cannot remember the details.

Dory and the Mama said...

What a wonderful group!

Cranberry Morning said...

It is truly a shameful thing that anyone would want to heckle and protest at a funeral. As if their loved ones don't have enough grief to bear! Thank God for the conscientious and kind hearts of the Patriot Guard.

Ruth Hiebert said...

I agree with others who say that it is a shame that sorrowing families need that kind of protection, but,I'm happy to see that someone is doing that.I think the idea of giving rides to these older folks is amazing.

pattisjarrett said...

It's very sad to know there is a need for people to provide this service at military funerals. It's also a bit maddening.

PGR Wayne said...

I have a Google alert set for "Patriot Guard Riders," which is how I came across your post. On behalf of nearly 300,000 members in all states of the nation, I'd like to thank you for your kind words. It is an honor for us to do what we do.
I realize that your blog post refers to a conversation from eight years ago with a Patriot Guard Rider sister of mine, and our general mission has evolved.
The genesis of the PGR was when a small group of veterans took it upon themselves to guard a family in Kansas against protesters at the funeral of their loved one. They stood  peacefully as a shield between the sight and sound of the protesters and the grieving family. Fortunately, this sort of thing is a relatively rare occurrence. The bulk of our missions today is in providing a motorcycle escort from the funeral home, church, Temple, etc, to the burial site for any first responder or honorably discharged veteran who has passed.  We fly the US flag on our bikes and cages during the escort, and we stand a flag line at each of the aforementioned locations.  We've been asked to be pallbearers, grave diggers, tribute readers and more. We will do all that we can to show our respect to the deceased and their family.
When invited, we will also stand a flag line at community events, Memorial dedications, and honorarium.
We never show up uninvited. Our existence has spread largely by word of mouth. More and more  Funeral Directors communicate our services to families that might want to utilize us to elevate their loved one's burial in patriotism. I personally know of more than one case where a mourner at a funeral saw us and decided right then and there to make arrangements for a PGR escort when their time came.  If I may be so bold to say, a funeral procession escort and flag line by the PGR can be a respectful spectacle.
I say "respectful" because our motto is "Riding With Respect." Our primary directive, and it comes very naturally to each of us, is to show respect in every action concerning the lost loved one, the family, and the process. Frequently, a family will express their gratitude for our participation. It is humbling, but as we say, "It's not about us." Selfishly, it does feel good, but we gently deflect any acclaim directed at us. If I eased a burden by the tiniest bit, if I made the family feel just a little better, if I made the survivors of our country's true heroes feel that their service and sacrifices were appreciated and respected by a nation of grateful strangers, then I've accomplished my goal.
Sadly, there are times that we escort an indigent veteran to the cemetery. We might know nothing of the person other than that which is in their military records. This Hero might have no friends for family to stand for them, but we become their family. He (or she) deserves a respectful, honorable send off as much as someone surrounded by scores of mourners. In my area, NYC, the George Werst Funeral Home in Glendale, following the direction of the local American Legion, bears the expense of the funeral. There are many funeral parlors throughout the country that provide the same services. We greatly appreciate their contribution and dedication in these efforts.
If anyone is interested in joining us (we do not actively recruit members - they usually find us!) you can find us on the Web at www.PatriotGuard.org . Or I, myself, would be happy to answer any questions you may have.  Reach me at PGRWayne@gmail.com .  You need not be a veteran, you dont need to ride a motorcycle; we have many members in cars. We are of all races, religions, and political leanings All that is required is unwavering respect, and a desire to share that respect on the final journey.
Once again, thank you for your kind words, and don't forget to thank a veteran.

So when you SEE our YELLOW BANNERS, give us THE BRAKE. Let us in , let us pass, we are escorting VETERANS, who deserve 3 Minutes of your life , as they have given you theirs. So Please GIVE em THE BRAKE!