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Southern Route Coordinator News – January 2019

31 JANUARY 2019

Greetings from Fort Worth, TEXAS! 

…currently one of the few places in the U.S. not suffering from global warming, er, I mean the Polar Vortex FREEZE!  My coldest ride ever was 22°F for the Big Texas Toy Run several years ago.  I’m sure many of you will easily have that beat!  Let us know in a reply – Who’s the toughest Polar Bear on the road?  Just be safe out there family!  Warmer riding days are coming, and I look forward to sharing them with you on the Run in May.

SR RC Welcome Video

The long-awaited Southern Route RC Welcome Video is almost complete and should be published very soon.  Big thanks to my Daughter Cara “Bug” (FNG 2017) for being my Director/Videographer and to Gunny for providing some RFTW 1989 Interview footage.  I believe we should all occasionally look back to where we started as a heading check towards where we’re going.  I hope you’ll all enjoy watching.

50/50 & Raffle Rouser

There are two very important jobs still open on the Southern Route…  We need a 50/50 Rouser and a Raffle Rouser – yes, I’d prefer two volunteers so that each can focus on one of the tasks.  We’ll have some very impressive items for the Raffle this year and the 50/50 drawing every morning on the Run is always an exciting way to start the day.  If you’d like to be a part of the fundraising process and get more involved in the workings of the Run, this may be the step you’re looking for.  Besides, it’s a great way to meet EVERYONE on the Southern Route!

The Itinerary

We’ve been working hard to tweak the Itinerary to take advantage of some of the great comments received on the After Action Reports this summer.  BIG THANKS to our Road Guard Captain for coordinating and confirming the entire route and to our ARC for participating in the detailed review sessions.  It’s not just a cut and paste from last year – we plan ahead for known upcoming highway construction and for changes in our fuel stops – we’ve had a few Gas Stations close or that will be under construction!  The Itinerary book goes to press at the end of March and will be released in digital form as soon as it does.  I can tell you that for general planning purposes, the basic route, lunch stops and daily destinations are very much like last year’s plan.

Phone Calls & Texts

As we get closer to May, things start moving faster in the planning world.  With so many FNG’s (Welcome Home!) coming out for the Run this year there are bound to be questions.  Most all critical info and a lot of good gouge and planning info are available on the rftw.us website.  But I do get the occasional call or text asking some basic questions, because as hard as we try, someone will think of something we didn’t cover.  So, if you urgently need a piece of info that is nowhere to be found, your ARC and I are here to help.  Just introduce yourself and ask away – I don’t have everyone’s phone number in my contact list – yet!

Track the Pack during the Run

Last year, we were fortunate to have the use of Scout GPS Trackers (findmyscout.com) to help us keep real time location on the pack.  This year, we’ll be working with the good folks at Scout again and will be equipped with their latest updated systems.  There will be a link on the rftw.us website that may be used to find where the pack is at any point along the Run.  We hope this is especially useful for our supporters along the roads and bridges as well as for our advance teams as we approach fueling stops and staging areas.  Look for the link on the website as we get closer to May and plan to use it!

The Mission

So, the Vietnam War ended almost 44 years ago – at least according to our government – the Korean War ended (sort of) almost 66 years ago.  So why is it so important that we keep pushing forward to keep this mission alive?

First of all, the termination of hostilities and even the declaration of Armistice ends only the active involvement of national conflict.  The “War” is endured in the hearts and minds of those personally involved and I don’t mean only those in service.  Everyone who has served in uniform or as a civilian had someone back home that was just as deeply affected.  Especially so, if those in service did not return.  The focus of our Mission is on people – even a quick glance at the RFTW Mission Statement makes that obvious.  When that mission statement is boiled down to its base, we can see that it is borne of one of the oldest creeds of the “Brotherhood of Arms” – LEAVE NO ONE BEHIND.  For us, “NO ONE” – includes family and friends.

Secondly, our collective attention to the issue of those left behind is important to help keep the people of our country and of our government aware that we have NOT FORGOTTEN.  In an age where it appears most our politicians are more interested in staying in power and opposing people they don’t like, our unbiased attention to the real issues facing our patriotic citizens is more important than ever.  I may not agree with how all our RFTW family members feel about political issues, but I will lock arms with all of them to keep the pressure on to bring home the TRUE Patriot who was lost or missing in the service of our great nation.

 Finally, the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (dpaa.mil) is an office in the Pentagon that is funded by our tax dollars and their mission must be kept in the spotlight!  Whether you love them or hate them, the DPAA is a staffed and funded function of our military infrastructure and they are moving forward.  From the latest stats published by the DPAA, the numbers of missing are as follows…

________________Missing as of 25JAN2019______Accounted for in 2018_

World War 2:                                72,747                                              160

Korean War:                                   7,671                                                43

Vietnam War:                                1,590                                                11

Gulf War:                                             5                                                      0

I was encouraged to see that 88 of those recovered from WW2 are from Pearl Harbor – the USS Arizona Memorial Site there is as sacred to a Sailor as the Alamo is to any Texan.  It is also worth noting that of the more than 82,000 missing, 75% were lost in the Indo-Pacific region, and over 41,000 of the missing are presumed lost at sea.  The bottom line is that we are not just shouting in the wilderness – there is an agency working for us to seek out and recover our missing.  We are the watchdogs.  We must help keep the focus where it belongs so that the spark of hope can become the warmth of closure for our honored POW/MIA Families.

 

This is why WE RIDE…

TOGETHER WE can make a difference…

TOGETHER WE RIDE!

 

Very best regards,

Billie “Bugs” Dunlap

Southern Route Coordinator

Run For The Wall XXXI

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RFTW SR RC Newsletter – DECEMBER 2018

Greetings from Fort Worth, TEXAS!

“Enjoy your retirement” they said. “You’ll have more time at home” they said. “You won’t have to go to sea again” they said. Things often don’t go as expected – since retiring in July, I’ve spent 5 weeks at home and 4 weeks at sea! But the truth is, I have very much enjoyed my partial retirement – I’ve even grown a beard!

IS IT MAY YET?!?

As of this 01 DEC 2018, there are only 164 days until Kick Stands up on Wednesday, 15 MAY 2019! For those of you keeping score, that means we’re more than half way around the sun with only 5½ months to go. It’s never too early for the long-range planning of health, fitness, equipment, route and lodging. Speaking of lodging, I’m fielding a lot of e-mails asking about publication of the Hotel List…

Hotel List for the Run

For those who don’t know or may have filed the info away somewhere, the Hotel List for all routes is expected to publish on 01 JAN 2019. Your State coordinators are finishing up the final negotiations for a good group rate at several hotels local to each of our overnight stops. The Hotel Lists will be published on each Route’s respective Hub on the rftw.us web site. Your clue to its publication will be when the title changes from “Southern Route 2018 Hotels” to “Southern Route 2019 Hotels”.

RFTW President’s Message

If you haven’t done so, please take the time to read the RFTW President’s Message for NOV/DEC 2018 under the “Scuttlebutt” tab on the rftw.us main page. It’s terrible to think that one person’s reach for dollars nearly forced our setting aside this great Mission and relegating the Veterans and Patriots we support back to the dark days of silence and neglect. Like Easy said in his message, “…veterans suing veterans has consequences…” I can think of several combat analogies to that act, but none are pleasant and may even cause distress in the reading – I’ll not add to the pain. But the good news is we’re still on track despite this individual’s efforts and RFTW XXXI is getting ready to roll!

Bucket List

There’s always talk about the Run being more than a ride, and all of us who’ve lived it understand that. If your friend tells you it’s on their “Bucket List” when you talk about RFTW, just grin and tell them, “It’s time to fill the Bucket!” You and I both know this Mission quickly overflows that bucket and just like the old potato chip commercial said, “It’s hard to eat just one!” Besides, how many of you before RFTW knew that there was more out there and felt the need to re-connect with your family of service – whether military or civilian. You may have joined in that one leg of the Run and then decided to stay for another – and another while feeling there was something there that you couldn’t quite categorize. Then the next year you joined from your hometown to ride into DC and really grasped the magic. Then the next year – ALL THE WAY! The bottom line is that we all have a story of what led us to the Run, and it doesn’t matter if it was a Bucket List or a dire need to connect with your veteran family. I’ll be glad you’re here and I’ll be proud to ride with you for 1 leg, 1 day or ALL THE WAY! You’re all part of the story, part of the Mission and part of the Family!

The Mission

While we’re thinking of the mission and being on track, it’s a good time to remember what that mission is…

The mission statement of Run For The Wall reads:

  •        To Promote healing among ALL veterans and their families and friends
  •        To Call for an accounting of all Prisoners of War and those Missing in Action (POW/MIA)
  •        To Honor the memory of those Killed in Action (KIA) from all wars
  •        To Support our military personnel all over the world

While we strongly emphasize the Mission when we’re on the Run, we all know in our hearts that the Mission is alive every day. When I read of Wizard’s weekly visitations with our honored veterans or Wonder Woman’s trips to DC to keep the MIA search in the focus of our government or see the way we as a nation pause to honor the passing of truly revered war Veteran and President – I know that spark is alive in more people than we realize. Our job, as we CONTINUE THE MISSION, is to keep feeding that spark and fan it to flame whenever and wherever we can.

MERRY CHRISTMAS & HAPPY NEW YEAR!

I’d like to wish a very joyous Christmas season to all my RFTW Family. As we reflect on the blessings of life and liberty that we all enjoy in the greatest nation on earth, we also remember those standing watch to ensure we may continue to do so. May God continue blessing each of us in the new year and guard us to safe pathways along the roads we ride.

TOGETHER WE RIDE!

Very best regards,

Billie “Bugs” Dunlap

Southern Route Coordinator

Run For The Wall XXXI

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RFTW XXXI – SR Assistant Route Coordinator Intro & Newsletter

This months opening Newsletter is from our RFTW XXXI ARC, Bob “Captain America” Nelson.  V/r, Bugs


October 2018 Newsletter – ARC Edition

Greetings from the high desert of Northern Nevada. First, I would like to thank Bugs and the BOD for allowing me this honor to serve as the Southern Route Assistant Route Coordinator for RFTW XXXI 2019.

Secondly, I would like to introduce myself to those who do not know me. I was an FNG, just as we all were once, in 2004. I am a veteran of 10 Runs For The Wall, US Navy (Vietnam ’72 – ‘73), US Army (Afghanistan ’03) Retired in 2010.

I believe that RFTW was founded by Vietnam Veterans who likely never envisioned these situations we face today as a Nation.   We will need to continue to adapt and evolve to live up to our stated Mission. That means we will need to strive to understand the issues and challenges that face our recent era of Veterans and Welcome Them Home. That does not mean that we abandon our heritage but build upon it to include ALL who need our support.

Lastly, I would like to clarify a subject the is often misunderstood and misinterpreted, that is Saluting by United States Members of the Armed Forces and Veterans while not in uniform.

Although it is not widely known, a provision of the 2009 Defense Authorization Act changed federal law to all US Veterans and military personnel not in uniform to render the military hand-salute when the National Anthem is played and during the raising, lowering or passing of the flag.   As for the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, follow the guidance of subparagraph ( C ) below.

Here is the actual text from the law:

SEC. 595. MILITARY SALUTE FOR THE FLAG DURING THE NATIONAL ANTHEM BY MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES NOT IN UNIFORM AND BY VETERANS.

Section 301(b)(1) of title 36, United States Code, is amended by striking subparagraphs (A) through (C) and inserting the following new subparagraphs:

(A) individuals in uniform should give the military salute at the first note of the anthem and maintain that position until the last note;  (B) members of the Armed Forces and veterans who are present but not in uniform may render the military salute in the manner provided for individuals in uniform; and  (C) all other persons present should face the flag and stand at attention with their right hand over the heart, and men not in uniform, if applicable, should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it  at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart;

Note: Part (C) applies to those not in the military and non-veterans. The phrase “men not in uniform” refers to civil service uniforms like police, fire fighters, and letter carriers – non-veteran civil servants who might normally render a salute while in uniform.

Respectfully,

Bob “Captain America” Nelson

Assistant Route Coordinator RFTW SR 2019

bob.nelson@rftw.us

 

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Southern Route Contact List Update

Southern Route Riders,

The Southern Route Contacts list has been updated for the current list of Platoon Leadership assignments, Road Guards, Ambassadors, Staging, and State Coordinators as well as many other important jobs.  The Fuel Team and Chaplain assignments will be posted as soon as they are available, but the contact info for those team’s leaders are listed if you need to reach them.  If you’re interested in volunteering for one of the teams, please contact the Team Leader for more information.  You may also contact me or the ARC, Bob Nelson for more info or to volunteer for some of the direct support positions.

Very best regards,

Billie “Bugs” Dunlap
Southern Route Coordinator
Run For The Wall XXXI

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RFTW SR RC Newsletter – SEPTEMBER 2018 – Part 1

Greetings from Fort Worth, Texas!

Yes, I’m writing from Fort Worth having returned just this past weekend from the RFTW All Route Kerrville Reunion. Cowboy and Sam and the cast of family supporting the effort outdid themselves again in presenting the best Kerrville Reunion EVER! The weather didn’t cooperate like we all hoped it would, but you can’t rain out the Run and you can’t rain out the spirit of the Mission which was obviously as strong as it was last May.

Besides the Reunion, your Southern Route Leadership Team has been hard at work coordinating the events and support leading up to next May. We are very close to announcing the entire Platoon Leadership assignments, but in the meantime, your RFTW XXXI Platoon Leaders have been assigned as follows…

Six Pack:          Don “Mid-Wife” Jordan

1st Platoon:     Lennie “Big Red” Hodson

2nd Platoon:   Ralph “Sidewinder” Sorenson

3rd Platoon:    Mike “COB” Pittman

4th Platoon:    Robert “Old School” Reavis

5th Platoon:    David “Buzz” Mullen

6th Platoon:   Adam “Copper” McElroy

7th Platoon:    Van “Silk Tie” Robinson

8th Platoon:   George “Mr. Magic” Howard

9th Platoon:   Dennis “Pop” Schwartz

10th Platoon:  Angie “Den Mother” Uhler

The Assistant Platoon Leaders and Tailgunners are being notified now and the full list will be published very soon.

I’ve also sent out a coordination message to all the Southern Route State Coordinators looking for information concerning their areas of responsibility and information about their team supply requirements. If you are a State Coordinator or Assistant and you don’t have an e-mail in your inbox from me, please contact me ASAP.

On another note, online Registration for RFTW XXXI is open and the on-line geedunk store is stocked and ready to take your orders. At last report, there were almost 200 folks already pre-registered across all routes. The incentive to register online is even greater this year in that on-site registration will now be $50 – online registration remains at $30. Don’t wait – register now!

Finally, I want to express how proud I am to be a part of this family. Regardless of your politics, or what brand of motorcycle you ride or whether you say pee-cann or pee-cahn, it just doesn’t matter when we get together to reinforce the bonds that make us strong. And those bonds are STRONG! I can’t tell you how many people have told me – “I’ll do any job you need me to do!” and they mean it! Those are the folks with their eye on the mission and know that ALL the jobs are important. I challenge all of you who look forward to May, to keep in mind that the Mission goes on year ‘round and the job you do to advance that mission is just as important now as it will be then.

Watch for Part 2 coming soon…

Bugs out!

Billie “Bugs” Dunlap

Southern Route Coordinator

Run For The Wall XXXI

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RFTW SR RC Newsletter – AUGUST 2018 – Part 2

Greetings from Pax River!

With Part 2 of the August Newsletter, we begin discussions of Rider Safety and Operating Procedures used on Run For The Wall. It’s never too early to start getting ready and a clear understanding of how we ride is a primary factor in creating and maintaining a safe environment on the road. So, Kick Stands Up – here we go…

Stagger Formation – A Basic Guide

Formation riding can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience when everyone in the group is locked on and the formation remains tight and consistent. When the opposite occurs, the formation ride may become frustrating at best. Very often the difference isn’t necessarily due to rider ability as much as a basic understanding and uniform approach to how the formation is defined. The Stagger Formation is basic to any group ride. It allows for efficient passage on highways, flexibility in traffic, group integrity through intersections and can be safely executed by riders of almost any experience level.

I had the honor and privilege of leading a Platoon in Stagger Formation on RFTW XXVIII in 2016. Along the course of close to 3000 miles that we road together, this group set and held a textbook Stagger Formation that was truly impressive to behold – really, I’ve seen video! Here’s how we did it…

As with any large or complex task, the success of execution depends on attention to the details. A successful Stagger Formation depends on a consistent application of its individual elements.

The Roadway
     >The roadway lane is divided into three tracks – Left/Middle/Right.
     >The Stagger Formation will use the only Left & Right tracks.
     > DO NOT ENTER THE CENTER TRACK except for safety of the lane.

The Formation
     >Each two bike group is a “Section”: Bike 1 & 2, Bike 3 & 4, Bike 5 & 6, etc.
     >The Bike on left is the Lead Bike of the Section, the Bike on right is the Wing Bike.
    >The Lead Bike maintains a set spacing on the bike directly ahead, in the Left Track.
    >The Wing Bike maintains half that spacing on their Lead Bike, but offset in the Right Track.
    >The Wing Bike maintains their spacing on their Lead Bike regardless of the Lead Bike’s spacing except for safety of the lane.

Maintaining Position
    >The Lead bike should watch ahead 2-3 bikes to anticipate fluctuation.
    >Think “Micro-adjustment” of the throttle, no big accelerations or decelerations.
    >Sight Picture – The Wing Bike should observe and set a sight picture in the correct position such as aligning the Lead Bikes right mirror to a spot on the windscreen. As long as the sight picture is lined up, you’re in position.
    >BRAKES should be used only when stopping the formation – spacing is maintained by judicious use of throttle and down shifting.
    >Accordion Effect – The smallest change in speed is magnified as it affects each following rider.
    >Bike Overlap – Unless the formation is coming to a stop, NEVER close the formation to create an overlapping condition between the Lead and Wing Bike.
    >Deceleration Discipline – When the formation slows down, do NOT create an OPENING/INCREASING GAP in front of you. Slowing more quickly than the bike in front of you steals space from the bike behind you.
    >If a rider drops out, the riders on that side move forward to close the gap.
    >When stopped, the formation collapses to side-by-side, then reforms the stagger when rolling.

This concept of the Stagger Formation removes some variability since the primary spacing is maintained only by the Lead Bike of each section. Less experienced riders are often more successful riding in the Wing position. But regardless of position, a good briefing and clear understanding of each rider’s responsibilities will make for a tight and consistent formation, even if you’re NOT riding 3000 miles.

Watch for Part 3 coming soon…

Bugs out!

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RFTW SR RC Newsletter – AUGUST 2018 – Part 1

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Greetings from Pax River!

On Thursday, 16 AUG 2018 your previous and incoming Leadership Team gathered for a “Hot Wash” of events from RFTW XXX. Having reviewed all the AAR’s received so far (it’s still not too late to send…), we discussed what went well and started looking at improvements in some areas. In the end it was a very good gathering for the closest we have to a “Change of Command” as the reigns are handed off to the new team.

New Leadership Team Members
Speaking of the new team, we’ve now filled the Ambassador and Staging Lead jobs…
> Ambassador Lead: Michael “Wizard” Turner
> Staging Lead: Steve “Hard Rock” Powell
Both are very experienced RFTW riders and team members with a passion for the mission, our riders and the people we support. Later this week, I’ll be updating the leadership contact list on the web site at rftw.us/southern-route-contacts. If you’re interested in volunteering for one of the support teams, contact that team lead – they’re already building their teams.

Platoon Leadership Volunteers
Our Platoon Coordinator is assembling the recommended list for Platoon Leaders, Assistants and Tail Gunners and will be submitting that list to me at the Kerrville Reunion next month. If you submitted a volunteer card, then Big Vic has it and you’re on the list. If you didn’t, it’s not too late – but time is running short. Please contact Big Vic if you are unsure if you’re listed or if you need to sign up to serve.

Outreach Team Lead – Memorials
Karoni Forrester has done an outstanding job over the past years as our Outreach Team Lead and will continue to do so on RFTW XXXI. To allow her freedom to focus on the Outreach Visitation portion of that mission, I am seeking another Outreach Team Leader to focus on our visits to Memorials and Monuments along the Run. This Lead should have experience with outreach participation and be willing to prepare and present information on those various memorials as well as help guide the breakaway Outreach Missions. This Lead will also coordinate with the Honor Guard Coordinator as required to ensure wreath presentations are staffed and ready on these outreaches. If you are interested, please contact me or the ARC to volunteer.

SR Finance Coordinator
Another very important position yet to fill on the Southern Route is that of Finance Coordinator. This person must be an All The Way rider or participant who has a good background in Accounting, Finance or Bookkeeping. As a 501(c)(3) organization, our adherence to specific procedures for money handling and disbursement is extremely important. The Finance Coordinator will work closely with me and the ARC leading up to and during the Run to ensure all donations are properly collected and accounted for and that all our expenses, outgoing donations, educational grants, fuel bills, etc. are paid promptly and fully.  The Finance Coordinator also works closely with the Board of Directors with regards to all southern Route finances. If you are qualified, interested and want to be very involved, please contact me or the ARC to volunteer.

Kerrville Reunion: 21-23 SEP 2018
I always look forward to the Kerrville Reunion! Cowboy and Sam and many others work very hard to present an enjoyable and interesting weekend for the RFTW Family for a gathering in the interim between Runs. Besides the awesome Saturday Night Banquet, there is a Saturday morning breakfast, ride plans (including the Pie Ride), an open sitdown with some of the Board Members, and a Friday night VFW Mixer. Plus, your ARC and I along with many other Team Leads will be there to represent the Southern Route. For more information, go the RFTW Web Site Forums at rftw.us/forums/topic/tx- reunion-2018-for-all-rftw-riders. I hope to see you there!

Watch for Part 2 coming soon…
Bugs out!

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Southern Route Coordinator News – JUL 2018 – Part 3

Greetings from Pax River!  

FOCUS ON THE MISSION!!!

As many of you may have heard, I recently retired from the U.S. Navy after a rewarding career spanning over 37 years.  During my ceremony remarks, I spoke about how one mission in life leads to another and how my military service to my country has slowly transformed into a veteran’s service to military members and their families.  Right now, the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) is reporting 1,597 Missing across Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, and China from the Vietnam War.  One of our Mission Statement objectives is, “To call for an accounting of all Prisoners of War and those Missing in Action (POW/MIA)”.  That very important mission is taken up by ours and several other motorcycle centric organizations that may sometimes be confused with that of RFTW.  However, there are few if any other organizations that place as much emphasis as RFTW places on all our Mission Statements in such a proactive and dedicated way…

  • To promote healing among ALL veterans and their families and friends;
  • To call for an accounting of all Prisoners of War and those Missing in Action (POW/MIA);
  • To honor the memory of those Killed in Action (KIA) from all wars; and
  • To support our military personnel all over the world.

Your loyal dedication to those statements throughout the year culminating in a 10 day coast-to-coast pilgrimage of ACTION in May is what makes Run For The Wall a unique and special thread in the fabric of our great nation.  It is very frustrating to have the successes and accomplishments of our efforts attributed to another organization regardless of how sincere their efforts, but we must remain focused.  A true Patriot is not one who stands on the shoulders of others shouting to demand their rights, but rather a true Patriot is one who stands at the base of those rights to protect and preserve them ensuring our future generations may enjoy them as well.

Just this past weekend, Gwynne and I had the pleasure of a lunch visit with RFTW family.  I encourage everyone to stay in contact, attend the weekend gatherings and reunions.  This is what keeps our relationships strong throughout the year and will help us all stay focused on what’s important.

To all my Brother and Sister Patriots, I salute you and look forward to serving you in the coming year as we honor and support the objectives of Run For The Wall and CONTINUE THE MISSION!

Watch for August Newsletter series coming soon…

Bugs out!

Billie “Bugs” Dunlap

Southern Route Coordinator 

Run For The Wall XXXI

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Southern Route Coordinator News – JUL 2018 – Part 2

Greetings from Pax River!  

After Action Report Update…

Quite a few folks mentioned to me that they’d like to see some feedback on the AAR’s.  So far, the Southern Route Riders have generated over 50 After Action Reports (AAR’s) and I have read every one of them – thank you to everyone who took the time to write.  (It’s not too late – they are still coming in!)  The most commonly referenced items are addressed below along with the number of times they were referenced in an AAR:

  1. Rider Training (14) – This topic is extremely important and each of us as conscientious riders should take responsibility to ensure we are capable of handling our machines and always seeking to improve our skills.  Our Board President emphasized this very issue in nearly all his newsletters from last year.  With that being said, there are many different training opportunities out there and I encourage everyone to take advantage of them to improve their skills before RFTW XXXI.  I will be doing that very thing myself!
  2. Route Selection/Detours (9) RFTW XXX Southern Route experienced some extreme challenges with an unexpected arduous detour and the growing pains of a new stop along the route.  Your leadership team will be closely reviewing the issues associated with both in order to determine the best course of action for next year.  
  3. Schedule/Stops (8) – The Run schedule governing dwell time at each stop and the process by which that time is monitored are both under review.  Thank you all for the ideas on how to start and stop the clock as well as where we might shave some extended dwell time off a few of the locations.  You can expect some noticeable revisions coming for the RFTW XXXI Schedule.
  4. Staging (8) – There were some evident growing pains with the large number of participants on RFTW XXX as well as some issues with the equipment used to organize the multiple staging locations.  Many of the staging team members submitted AAR’s with ideas for improvement that promise to make next year’s operation better than ever.

There were several other issues touched upon such as Fueling Process, FNG Mentoring/Liaison, CB Requirements, and Trucker Coordination and almost all were constructive, thoughtful comments and suggestions – THANK YOU!  Your Leadership Team will be reading every one of these AAR’s to help generate actions improving our Run.

Watch for Part 3 coming soon…

Bugs out!

Billie “Bugs” Dunlap

Southern Route Coordinator 

Run For The Wall XXXI

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Southern Route Coordinator News – JUL 2018 – Part 1

Greetings from Pax River!  

I am extremely honored to have been confirmed as your RFTW XXXI Southern Route Coordinator and look forward to another successful and rewarding year serving you all and this great Mission.  

LEADERSHIP ANNOUNCEMENT!!!

For my first announcement as RC, I am very happy to tell you that Bob “Captain America” Nelson has been confirmed by your Board of Directors as the RFTW XXXI Southern Route ARC.  Bob has been a major contributor to the continued success of our Southern Route having served in a number of demanding leadership positions.  He recently served for two years as our Platoon Coordinator and just this year he qualified as a Road Guard.  As I write this he is in the middle of completing the Hoka Hey Challenge.  Please congratulate him when you get the chance and show him the same fantastic support that I’ve enjoyed over the past year.

Next, I’d like to send out a GIANT THANK YOU to everyone who put so much of their time, effort, donations and HEART into making RFTW XXX such a HUGE SUCCESS.  Chad “Slacker” O’Dell was absolutely the right leader for that Run and we all owe him a debt of gratitude for the enormous personal investment he made toward its success.  His was an investment that will pay off for us all in the years to come.

As the RFTW XXXI train starts rolling toward next May, we are all very fortunate to have so many of our great leadership team returning…

Road Guard Captain – Bob “Captain” Mazzone
Platoon Coordinator – Vic “Big Vic” Killion
Senior Chaplain – Jerry “Partner” Plent
Fuel Team Lead – Curt “Stitch” Bancroft
Registration Lead – Shirley “Top Sarge” Scott
Merchandise Lead – Carol Olmstead
Outreach Visitation – Karoni “Hoops” Forrester
• An many others…

 

Three very important leadership roles still not yet assigned are Ambassador Lead, Staging Lead, and Finance Coordinator.  If you have a heart to serve the Mission and the Riders of RFTW, then we need you on the team!  It’s not too late if someone out there is interested in one of these very important jobs.  As usual, I expect to have the entire team assigned by the end of the Kerrville Reunion.

The Southern Route Coordinator News will be published throughout the year in several parts per month so that you can read through quickly and stay informed.

Watch for Part 2 coming soon…

Bugs out!

Billie “Bugs” Dunlap

Southern Route Coordinator

Run For The Wall XXXI