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Message from Nick “Richboy” Hentges, Director of Public Relations/Communications

Run for the Wall - We Ride For Those Who Can't

Aloha and Greetings Run for the Wall Family,
As I am sure everyone has figured out by now, we had to make the tough decision to cancel RFTW 2020. We have put together a Virtual Run Section on our Website ( This site should be up and Running by the end of the day, Monday, May 11th 2020. Here you will find Daily Virtual Sit Reps from each Route as well as photo galleries from last year’s Run.
We will also be adding Video content to the area, so if you have good videos of the Run, Send them to and we can try and get them up on our YouTube page and our website. ). Be sure to Visit the RFTW Store while you are there and check out some amazing deals on 2020 Merchandise.

Just because the Run has been cancelled does not mean our Mission of Healing and support ( must be cancelled. There are many ways to “Charlie Mike”. There are some ideas below on how to do that in addition to many great ideas our riders have had on their own.

We have added a link to Bios of fallen Service Members (compiled by Midway Route personnel). Ken “Sixstring” Dugas has challenged everyone (if safe and Legal) to download and Print a Bio and ride to a Veteran’s Memorial or Veteran’s home and get a photo of you with your bio and submit it (See website for info on how to submit).
There is also a Challenge/Quest that Bob “Captain America” Nelson came up with. See more information on the website.
Another great idea from Kris “Eyes” Wood is to simply do “Buddy Checks” on friends and neighbors during this trying time.

Below is a Message from the President of the BOD for Run for the Wall as well as a bit of information concerning the Store and Pre-Registration for 2021.

From Les “Easy” Williams

As I write this today, I am profoundly sad that Connie and I are not on our way to Ontario for the 32nd annual RFTW. Each year we have left on the Friday before kickstands up to enjoy the pre-run activities and experience the rewards of hundreds of folks who plan Run for the Wall for an entire year. It has always fascinated me to watch how well this complex mission works. But yet here we are, postponed until RFTW 2021.
I have come to realize that we are not in control of the invisible enemy which has caused our postponement. For our veterans and supporters who endure freezing temperatures, blazing heat, dehydration, snow, wild thunderstorms, hail, lightning, and tornadoes to accomplish our mission – this is a hard pill to swallow!
We do these things because our dedication to mission is heartfelt and bone marrow deep in each and everyone one of us. I know and you know Run For The Wall’s 32nd annual mission will be accomplished because your dedication to this mission is steadfast and enduring.
While we wait for another year of, “Is it may yet” the Board of Directors and Route Coordinator’s wanted to create a virtual RFTW to keep the mission ideals close to your hearts. With the hard work of Communications Director, Nick Hentges and Webmaster, Ted Kapner that vision has been completed. We know this will not be a substitute for the actual Run, but it should make your hearts lighter while bringing a smile to your faces. Cheer up we have many more ideas that will lift up everyone’s spirits coming your way throughout the summer. God Bless you all and stay safe.

Les “Easy” Williams
President, RFTW, Inc

Pre-Registration for 2021 will be opening back up later this summer. Save Money by Registering and Paying online. This also assists greatly in planning for next year. If you already registered and Paid for 2020, this will roll over to 2021. More info below.

All riders that have pre-registered for 2020 will automatically roll into the 2021 pre-registration database, whether you pre-paid or selected to pay at your sign-in location.
Changes that need to be made on your existing form (new bike, updated expiration dates on license, insurance, route change, etc.) should be directed to the newly established Contact Form category “RFTW 2020 – Registration Revisions.”    ONLY CHANGES TO YOUR FORM should go this category. The registration team will monitor these contact emails, revise your existing form and re-send it to you. We will do this until the cut-off date in April 2021.
If you see that you will NOT be participating in the 2021 Run, please complete a “Contact Form” under the same category and advise us.   We will then delete your registration, so that accurate participant numbers can be obtained.   This is critical information to the Route Coordinators, so please contact us if you are unable to go.
Refunds—because of the PayPal time limit for issuing refunds, many registrations cannot be refunded.  We are asking that you NOT request a refund if you know for sure that you’re unable to go in 2021.   If you are outside the time window, then there is nothing we can do through PayPal.
Donations—the monies that have been paid towards registration will stay as such for 2021.   Many of you have already stated that you want to donate the registration money for this year and pay, again, next year.   Those who would like to donate to the 2021 general fund to offset the 2020 expenses, can do so by the “Donate” button on the website:   We truly appreciate the support we’ve already seen

One final note

The RFTW store is offering a 25% discount on all 2020 Dated Merchandise. Please support the Run by helping us sell this dated inventory. It will make for a great collector’s item.

Last but not least, My personal Thanks to the BOD, Route Coordinators, State Coordinators, and all of our volunteers for dealing with the cancellation of the Run for 2020 and their continued work to make 2021 better than ever. Special Thanks to Ted “Boots” Kapner (RFTW Webmaster) for all of his expert help during these difficult times.

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Bill and Sharon Akins (Wings and Nav)

Name:  Bill and Sharon Akins

Road Names:  Wings and Nav

FNG Year: 2016

How man Runs have you participated in? All the Way: 1 Participant: 2
Always Central Route


What is your favorite Run for the Wall memory?

For us is was the 2018 Run.  I invited a wonderful friend of mine to do the run with us.  He road a Harley trike so we couldn’t be in the same platoon.  Don was a Bronze Star recipient and had never been to the Wall.  I knew this was going to be special when we got to Junction City KS.  Don was so moved by the crowds and the welcome that he was brought to tears.  At the end of the ceremony, I found him standing at attention saluting, with tears streaming down his face.  I could tell that the magical healing process was well underway.

When we finally arrived at the wall, I was able to capture a picture of Don with his hands spread out leaning against the Wall.  Tears were dropping to the ground as he had me read the 5 names between his hands.  He then turned to me and said, “There were only two of us that survived that day”.  My heart ached and the tears flowed freely and unashamedly.  We hugged and the healing process that comes to those of us that know that pain was well underway.   That moment captured all the stress, planning, expense and pain and made it all worthwhile.

We’ve never talked about that moment again and we both know that we will never have to.

Positions held as a volunteer on the Run.  None officially, Platoon Chaplain (unofficially) Looking forward to being an Asst. Platoon Leader for 2021.

Military Background if any or relationships with Military:  23 years United States Air Force: Father was 20 years USAF.  3 Brothers USAF with a combined time served of 72 years.  2 Sons USAF (Both KC-135 Stratotanker Pilots)

Gold Star or Blue Star family member?  Double Blue Star mom and dad.

What got you to do the RFTW the first time?  An invite from a fellow vet.  He couldn’t stop talking about why I should go.  Glen Bucholz a former Ambassador for the Run.  I knew I had to ride for those that I knew who can’t. 

What brought you back?  Family.  Plain and simple.  I love my platoon.  We missed a year, 2017 and when we joined up in 2018, we were greeted like long lost family.  When we were hit last year, the platoon rallied around us to get us back up and going.  These folks are just great people. 

Also, between my two sons, they have deployed 21 times.  The war is not over……  I WILL NOT FORGET.

Have you ever participated in Rolling Thunder?  Yes (2017) with my brother Col. Brian Akins.

Are you planning on Rolling to Remember:  Unfortunately, no.  I’m not quite retired and duty calls.

Brief synopsis of why you ride:  Sharon and I have been moved by our companions that partake in this ride.  We also have had the honor to hand out homemade blankets and socks and other items to the Vets at the VA Centers that we stop at.  Last year we went straight to the Hospice ward at one of our stops and I had the amazing opportunity to pray over many of those that were there.  I was an emotional wreck but knew that I had been blessed far more than I could have blessed.  We are collecting blankets for this year’s Run and now have our entire neighborhood involved in the process.  Sharon and I have committed to ride the Run as long as we can and will continue to serve as Unofficial Chaplains as long as you will let us act in that capacity.  Anything to add:  Yes, just do it.  It is an emotional rollercoaster ride that I hope I never have to miss.  It is therapy, pay homage to those buddies that didn’t come home, and to those that did but were forgotten.  It will help future generations of America remember that All gave some and some gave ALL.

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Edwin “Thumb” Musto

Name: Edwin Musto

Road Name: THUMB

FNG Year: 2016

I was on the yellow Goldwing on my FNG year – 2016

How many times have you been All the Way? Three times all the way.        

On Which Route (Routes) did you ride? All three times on Central Route – 2020 would have been my 4th time on Central Route as well as Sandbox.

What is your favorite Run for the Wall memory?  On RFTW there are so many memories made. However I must say that arriving at Ontario CA on my FNG year I was blown away of the camaraderie and the Brotherhood shown to me being a boy from South Africa and now living in New Zealand. The other memory is after my accident in Topeka KS and catching up with the pack at Rainelle and then being offered a ride into Arlington. Not only was this just a ride but a ride being in the Missing Man Formation. I will never forget the tears seeing all the white markers and then going to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall and being assisted to find the name of RICHARD FRANK MUSTO whom I had ridden for. These memories I will cherish forever and I will NEVER forget. Another memory is my wife riding with me on RFTW and us both going to the wall together, and many more!

Me at the wall on my FNG year 2016
Janet (Thumbelina) and I at the wall together in 2017

Have you held any positions as a volunteer on the Run?  Yes.

If you have, which Positions have you held? In 2017 I was on the Ambassador Team and in 2018 I was on the Communications Team. 2021 I will be on the Communications Team and an Ambassador on Sandbox Route.

Riding with Janet (Thumbelina) on her FNG year and as an Ambassador – 2017

Are you a Military Veteran, or do you have a military background or a relationship with a member of the Military? Yes. I served in the South African Defense Force (Army) 1980-1982 as a Corporal.

Me as a young Corporal back in about 1981

Are you a Gold Star or Blue Star family member? I lost my cousin Edward Leslie Mayo on 17 January 1977. He was accidentally shot by friendly fire at Kwando in the East Caprivi which is the far North Eastern corner of what is now called Namibia.

What inspired you to participate in the RFTW the first time? I had read about Run for the Wall while doing research on a book I am writing about my family history. I first discovered the name of Richard Frank Musto on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall and after that found out about the run and wanted to ride in honor of him. I have found no trace of any links to our direct Musto family.

What brought you back? Like many FNG’s I was only going to do this once. As for me the cost and logistics to do this Mission is way out my reach. However, with a supportive wife and a very supportive Brother from another mother aka Kevin (Speedbump) Bowman I have been blessed to return to do the run and ride for those who can’t.

Have you participated in Rolling Thunder? No.

Are you planning on participating in Rolling to Remember (the AMVETS event that replaces Rolling Thunder)? Unfortunately not as will be participating in Sandbox Route.

Give us a few words about “WHY YOU RIDE.” I ride for those who can’t who have given the supreme sacrifice so we can enjoy the freedoms we have today. I also ride for many Brothers who I served with in South Africa who gave the supreme sacrifice.

Anything else to Add??

I am passionate about Run for the Wall and share about the Mission where and when I get the opportunity. I hope I can do the Run a few more times in the future. Thanks to the BoD of RFTW and all the many volunteers who work tirelessly year-round so that we can continue to RIDE FOR THOSE WHO CAN’T.

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Edward “Santa Ed” Holterman

Name: Edward Holterman

Road Name: Santa Ed

FNG YEAR: 2010



Positions HELD: 6 YEARS AS PLATOON LEADER,CAMPING COORDINATOR for 4 years?, And 2 years as an AMBASSADOR, Tail gunner 1 year.

MILITARY VETERAN: Army Vietnam AUGUST 66 – August 9th 67 wasn’t as tough as coming home. That was when I went in a holding pattern for 42 years. I was very angry and felt the survivors “Guilt”.

Gold or blue star: no

Participate in rolling thunder: yes 9 years except 1 year when my bike was running poorly.

Will you participate in rolling to remember: yes

What inspired you to ride for 1st time:

After attending a patriot guard mission in southern California I met “Top Sarge” and her husband. They told me about RTFW. Upon returning home I talked with lifelong Vietnam friend. He had been reading about RFTW on the internet. We both have had a lot of issues since serving in Vietnam. In fact, hardly ever talked or mentioned it for 42 years. No patches or hat. So, one day I purchased 2 Vietnam hat, took one for him and told him it is time we wear these and we have ever since. So, he meticulously planned out the trip in 2010. We agreed if either of us couldn’t go All The Way, the other one would. His bike broke down in Las Cruces and was unable to get it fixed. So as promised, I continued on. I really wanted to quit and go home feeling alone and not knowing anyone. I did make it to DC and finally after all the RFTW was over. I tried to go to my panel at around midnight, still not able to. I had been to the wall four times prior to this but could never go to the panel. While waiting to ride in Rolling Thunder, I set over on the grassy knoll and met some very good friends, and to this day we have become close “brothers”.  I did Rolling Thunder and rode right out west and home.

What Brought you back:

On the 3000-mile ride home, I was able to think about the past few weeks. Still very bothered by the WALL. My friend who broke down decided to bring his brother, wife and a pickup pulling a toy hauler. So, we made plans for one more try. We both made all the way on Southern Route. Still no change at the wall.
I was pulling my tent trailer, so when I was placed in “wagon train” or “trailer trash” PLATOON they needed another Tailgunner. Now I knew a few people from previous year, but pretty much still a loner. Still no change at the wall.
After riding back home 3000 miles, I decided I would try one more time. I rode with a friend from Patriot Guard Riders in Oregon. We went all the way southern route again. This was the year I met a person who spent a lot of time with me in Rancho. He and I talked about everything. This man later became a Southern Route Coordinator. Having those conversations with him is one of the reasons I continue doing RFTW. On my 6th time to the wall, I was finally able to resolve some of those problems. All because of an angel named “Raven”, who took a picture of me leaving my hat with a letter. She started the healing process. Five others came over to where we were standing. All but one of them are still with us. A chaplain told me, ” We will stay with you here for however long it takes”. I needed to understand why I was here, and they were on THE WALL. After a very long time I started to feel the release of all the guilt and anger. He told me that I needed to tell their story and show that we haven’t forgot them. Now I can go that panel and tell the story. In fact, each year for the past three years we do a “got you 6 at 6” after the run is over on Saturday evening. Many veterans have been there and all because of a special brother we started this.

Favorite Memory:

Without any doubt it was the year I was chosen to help place the wreath at the tomb of the unknown soldier.

Additional Comments:

I do believe RFTW would never have happened if not for Rolling Thunder. We need to show our respect and try to bring everyone home. “Let us never forget”. Like I have told many I would do the “Sandbox Run”, but first the protest ride on Sunday. So, I guess I will be at the Midwest Conflict Wall again for the 4Th Time, but suppose will ride alone again.

After 10 years I have been fortunate to be able to keep participating and now know many brothers and sisters who are some of the best family I’ve ever had. I was visiting with Stoney in Ontario prior to the run a few years ago. I told him if it wasn’t for the FNG’S the run would end. He said “If it wasn’t for the returning participants there wouldn’t be a RFTW. How true “Charlie Mike”. So, I make it my mission now to try and talk to and get to know every FNG. RFTW HAS become the best part of each year. “Den Mother” has been on several runs. She has inspired many to come on the run and several are now in leadership roles.
Thank God for keeping me healthy enough to continue and I love all RFTW participants…


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Kevin “KT” Maner

Name: Kevin Maner                       

Road Name:  KT

FNG Year:  2016

How many times have you been All the Way?  Twice all the way, 2020 (Southern Route Fuel Team) will make 3!   And how many times have you been a Participant?  Twice

On Which Route (Routes) did you ride? I have done the Southern Route all the way and as a participant.  I have done the Midway Route all the way and as a participant.

What is your favorite Run for the Wall memory?  My favorite RFTW memory was my FNG year.  I rode out to Ontario via a stop in Albuquerque where my oldest son lived.  He was moving back to Virginia and decided to make the trip across with me on the RFTW.  It was amazing to be an FNG with him that year.  Really made me proud to have other riders compliment my son’s dedication and attitude toward the mission.  I also rode in memory of a Rescue Swimmer brother that lost his battle to his demons and took his own life that year, he is one of the 22.  Seeing the outpouring of support and patriotism crossing the country was amazing. 

My Son and I the Morning we left Albuquerque.

Have you held any positions as a volunteer on the Run?  Not yet, Southern Route and Sandbox Fuel Team in 2020.

Are you a Military Veteran, or do you have a military background or a relationship with a member of the Military?  I spent 26 years in the Navy as a Helicopter Crewchief and a Rescue Swimmer, retired in 2006 as a Senior Chief Aviation Warfare Systems Operator.

Are you a Gold Star or Blue Star family member?  Blue Star dad x 3; USAF son, Navy and USAF son-in-laws.

What inspired you to participate in the RFTW the first time?  A Rescue Swimmer brother of mine has been all the way numerous times, he kept bringing it up and I kept putting it off.  Now that I have done it, I wish I had never hesitated. 

What brought you back?  Family, Patriotism, and Friendship

Have you participated in Rolling Thunder?  Yes, several times

Are you planning on participating in Rolling to Remember (the AMVETS event that replaces Rolling Thunder)?  Sandbox Route begins the morning of Rolling to Remember otherwise I would be there!

Give us a few words about “WHY YOU RIDE.”  I ride to remember, to honor, to ride for those who can’t.  I ride for my older brothers who are Vietnam Vets and to remember their brothers they lost

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Bob “Captain” Mazzone

Name: Bob Mazzone

Road Name: Captain

FNG Year: 2014

How many times have you been All the Way?  This will be my seventh time  

And how many times have you been a Participant? None

On Which Route do you ride? Southern

What is your favorite Run for the Wall memory? My FNG year. We were in the middle of the country and off to the side of the highway, I saw a truck with an American Flag and an old man. He was standing there holding onto the truck and saluting. I have no idea how long he had been there but when I mentioned it to some of the other riders, they said he was there every year.

Have you held any positions as a volunteer on the Run? Yes. Road Guard 2015 – 2017 and then Road Guard Captain 2018, 2019 and this year.

Are you a Military Veteran, or do you have a military background or a relationship with a member of the Military? Yes, 27 years in the Navy. Navy diver, Submariner, and a tour as the Chief Engineer on USS DWIGHT D. Eisenhower (CVN 69)

Are you a Gold Star or Blue Star family member? Blue Star. My son is in the Navy.

What inspired you to participate in the RFTW the first time? My father had served in the Navy through World War II and Korea and then retired after 30 years. Plus, I have relatives through my mother’s side that served all the way back to the American Revolution.  I was in college at the time of Vietnam and did not have to go. But lots of friends did.  I felt that I owed all of them something and maybe I could also help someone who just needed to talk to someone else about their demons. 

What brought you back? I have been a Road Guard with my local HOG Chapters over the years. So becoming a Road Guard seemed like the right thing for me to do.  It is an extremely rewarding experience when you pull into DC with all of your pack safely. So for me, it was a chance to give back to our riders and to support our Mission.

Have you participated in Rolling Thunder? No

Are you planning on participating in Rolling to Remember (the AMVETS event that replaces Rolling Thunder)? No

Give us a few words about “WHY YOU RIDE.” We still have thousands of people missing and unaccounted for from every war.  We can never let them be forgotten.  I ride so that this country never forgets.

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Nancy “Miss America” Schwartz

Name: Nancy Schwartz

Road Name:  Miss America (given to me by Jarrod Gerbitz)

FNG Year:   2018

How many times have you been All the Way? Once

And how many times have you been a Participant? Once, from Corydon, IN         

On which Route do you ride?  Central

What is your favorite Run for the Wall memory?  Like others that have been writing their stories, there are so many. First, in our FNG year, we were honored to ride the Missing Man Formation in remembrance of our friend’s son Pfc Nils Thompson. Second is participating in the Circle Dance with our brothers and sisters of the Black Creek Gourd Society. It is the “Gathering of Veterans” ceremony in Gallup, New Mexico. Third, would be visiting the Angel Fire Vietnam Veterans memorial a very spiritual and moving place.

Have you held any positions as a volunteer on the Run? No

Are you a Military Veteran, or do you have a military background or a relationship with a member of the Military? I am not a veteran. My Father served in WWII, his brother in the Korean War, and members of my Father’s family that have been in the military back to the Revolutionary War.

Are you a Gold Star or Blue Star family member? No. My best friend is a Gold Star Mother

What inspired you to participate in the RFTW the first time? The Mission Statement says it all,  “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.”

What brought you back? The feeling that we ARE making a difference by promoting healing, calling for the accounting of all POW/MIA, honoring the memory of those we have lost, and supporting our military. Visiting VA hospitals, memorials, and talking to those in the towns we stop in that support us has moved me to tears. Also, seeing the Patriots on the highway overpasses saluting us, waving flags, and standing in bad weather at times yet they are always there. Getting back in with Platoon 9, shout out to Squid and Pops.

Have you participated in Rolling Thunder? Yes, many times, when I rode my own motorcycle. I rode with my husband in 2019.

 Are you planning on participating in Rolling to Remember (the AMVETS event that replaces Rolling Thunder)?     It is still undecided.

Give us a few words about “WHY YOU RIDE”.  I ride for Nils my friend’s son that was killed in 2005 in Mosul, Iraq. We always visit his grave in Arlington for Memorial Day. I ride for those in our RFTW family that have a family member that is still a POW/MIA/KIA. I ride for the 22 a day that we lose to suicide. Witnessing the healing of our Vietnam Veteran brothers and give them the Welcome Home that is long overdue. Lastly, to see the joy of the children when we arrive at Rainelle, W VA Elementary School, getting the hugs is so very heartwarming.

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Board of Directors Openings

The RFTW Board of Directors is soliciting applications from riders interested in serving on the Board. There will be three (3) vacancies on July 1st, 2020 due to term limits.  The positions being vacated are Treasurer, Director of Merchandise, and Director of Operations & Training.  Because sitting members have the option of moving into vacant seats, these may not be the same positions being filled.

Anyone is eligible to apply, but it should be understood that the Board places a high priority on experience and past service to the Run in leadership and service positions when evaluating candidates.

If you would like to apply for a position on the Board of Directors, please submit a resume with an overview of your work history and a detailed recounting of your RFTW experience, including your FNG year, the number of times you’ve ridden with RFTW (both as a Participant and ATW), which route(s) you’ve ridden, and what leadership or service positions you’ve held.  We also ask that you submit a short cover letter explaining why you wish to join the Board.  Please send these to by March 31st, 2020.

We hope to hear from you. Remember… decisions are made by those who step up.

Person placeholder
Your Name Here
Open Positions
RFTW is looking for a few good people to fill expiring terms. If interested, please submit your resume to one of the current board members.

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Kevin “SPEEDBUMP” Bowman

Name: Kevin Bowman

Road Name: Speed Bump

FNG Year: 2016

How many All the Way/Participant? 4

What is your favorite Run for the Wall memory? My favorite memory… wow…My favorite memory would have to be how I have come to know so many of the RFTW participants! My FNG years was a very tough year. My buddy Edwin and I both went down in an accident just outside of Topeka KS. We licked our wounds for a couple days trying to sort out our bikes. Once we figured out a plan for the Bikes, we rented a car and drove almost 24 hours straight to catch up with the Pack. It was very important to Edwin and I to continue the Mission! We caught up with the Pack and ran ahead to watch everyone come into Rainelle WV to the School. The warm welcome and the amazement that we got from everyone in our Platoon was overwhelming! I was right then and there, given a Patch with my road name on it…. Speed Bump!! I couldn’t believe they had already had a patch made! Edwin and I followed the Pack the remaining 2 days of the Run, on into Washington DC! What was even more amazing is on Saturday Morning, Terry and Christy Ray (Some VERY Amazing People in the Trike Platoon) had found a couple of Trike Riders that were willing to let Edwin and I ride as Co-Riders into Arlington for the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. So, Edwin and I both were able to COMPLETE THE MISSION!!!

The patch!!!!
Kevin and Edwin with Tigger After Catching up with the pack

Positions held as a volunteer on the Run? Assistant Platoon Leader 2019, Platoon Leader for 2020

Military Background if any or relationships with Military? I was not in the Military. My Father in Law was/is a Retired Senior Master Sargent in the Air Force…. I worked at Sheppard Air Force Base from 1977 until 1989 and then moved to Arizona in January 1990 and worked at Williams Air Force Base from Jan 1990 until October 1991. Government shut the best weather Flight Training Base in the country down for budget cuts. I got to work with some incredible retired Air Force Aircraft Mechanics for 14 years!! I was a T37 and T38 Aircraft Mechanic for 9 of these years and I was an Instrument Flight Training Instructor for 5 years in the T38. So, I wasn’t IN the Military but man did I get to hang out with some GREAT folks!!

Gold Star or Blue Star family member? No

What got you to do the RFTW the first time? My buddy Edwin Musto from New Zealand is the guy that told me about RFTW. Edwin called one day in 2015 and said he was going to come to the US to ride in RFTW. That is how I found out about it! I did some research and WOW!!! I was IN!!

Kevin and Edwin

What brought you back? It gets in your BLOOD!

Have you participated in Rolling Thunder? NO

Are you planning on Rolling to Remember (AMVETS Replacement for Rolling Thunder)? No doing Sandbox Route

Brief Synopsis of “WHY YOU RIDE” See Military Background above…I was not in the Military, but I was a snot nose 18 year old kid that got hired right out of High School to work at Sheppard Air Force Base. ALL of the guys I worked with back in 1977 were from either the Korean War or Vietnam War. Lots of these guys had seen it ALL and DONE it ALL. I loved all of the guys SO much as they taught me the value of Brotherhood, Teamwork and Friendship. I listened to their stories over and over again throughout my young adult life even though I may have heard the story 10 times before. I ride to honor all of these guys that touched my life. I was a very fortunate teenager, I had about 25 Father Figures over the 14 years at Sheppard Air Force Base!

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Todd “Killswitch” or “Slow Ride” Miller

Name: Todd Miller

Road Name: Killswitch, Slow-Ride

FNG Year: 2013

How many times have you been All the Way? None yet, I usually follow the pack from Colorado Springs and sign on in Goodland, KS. In 2017 I rode to Eagle’s Nest to join the pack. And how many times have you been a Participant? 4 (2013, 2015, 2016, 2017)

On Which Route (Routes) did you ride? Central Route all four times.

What is your favorite Run for the Wall memory? Meeting Leroy Petry, Medal of Honor recipient, in Goodland, KS. Also earning my road name got me to meet the team at Manowar HD who recharged my battery and got me back on the road in about an hour.

Have you held any positions as a volunteer on the Run?  Staging Team 2015 and 2016.

A shot by a member of the Staging Team somewhere in West Virginia I think.
An Article in the Mountaineer, the Fort Carson newspaper about my ride in 2017. Photo from Robley Rex back parking lot.

Are you a Military Veteran, or do you have a military background or a relationship with a member of the Military? I am currently Active Army at Special Operations Command Europe in Stuttgart, Germany.

Are you a Gold Star or Blue Star family member? No.

What inspired you to participate in the RFTW the first time? I had been a member of Rolling Thunder in Ohio years earlier and had sold my bike to help buy a house. When I got to where I could buy another Harley in 2012, I thought, “I wonder if anyone rides to DC from this far away?”. Then I found RFTW.

What brought you back? The experience. There is nothing like the Run. It is long and exhausting, but every morning I woke up and wanted more. It will restore your belief in the patriotism of the people of this nation when you see all the support along the way.

Have you participated in Rolling Thunder? Yes, first in 2003.

Are you planning on participating in Rolling to Remember? I don’t stick around DC for Rolling Thunder ride anymore, so probably not. I get on the road to Ohio to see my grandson by Saturday afternoon anymore.

Give us a few words about “WHY YOU RIDE.” My father, a Viet Nam Veteran made it back seemingly unscathed. He was there in 1968 when I was born. He never discussed what he did over there, but it bothered him a lot. When I was 19 years old, my father shot himself. That was hard to deal with for a lot of years. I attribute his suicide to demons I only learned of after his death, but I will never know why he actually did it. He is the main reason I ride, but also for my grandfather (WWII) and my great grandfather (WWI). 

Anything else to Add?  You may remember me as the guy who flew from Korea to do the Run for 2 years in a row in 2015 and 2016. 2018 and 2019 were prevented by a trip to Afghanistan. I am planning to take leave from Germany for the Run in 2021. I should make a patch for that!