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Midway Route Coordinator – Newsletter – January update #3

Greetings RFTW Midway Family!

I am pleased to announce the completion of our Midway Itinerary book for 2020.  It is now posted on our RFTW.US website under the Midway Hub. I would like to thank our State Coordinators, ARC,  Road Guard Captain and Connie Williams for their assistance with this important planning and project.  I would encourage you all to check it out.  The new website looks fantastic! As a Road Guard and Road Guard Captain, I have always focused on the safety of our pack and defined the success of our mission by our representation of our mission and getting everyone to Washington DC safely. As Route Coordinator, I continue to focus on the safety of our riders and success for our mission. This year, I have put together a safety briefing for Midway and have added it to our itinerary book. Please read and understand it. My goal is to make sure that everyone receives a consistent and thorough understanding of our safety guidelines and procedures no matter where or when they join us!

I have received several complements about the hotel registrations.  Our hotel coordinator, Jerry Wilkins, worked very hard on this and I am glad to hear most people are having good experiences with making their hotel reservations.  If you have not made your reservations, the hotel list is also posted on the Website under Midway Hub.  I encourage you to make your reservations ASAP.

Speaking of hotels, I would like to let you know that our $1000 hotel raffle fund raiser has covered the cost of the prize.  We are now in the profit stage so all money received from this point on will go to pay for our Midway fuel.   Except for Ontario and Arlington, this fundraiser should pay for your hotels across the country!  Wouldn’t it be nice to have your hotel costs covered?  The cost per ticket is $10.00 or you can purchase 10 tickets for $50.00!  If you purchase $100.00 worth, you will get 25 tickets.    If you purchase 10 tickets or more before the end of February, you will receive 2 extra tickets (per 10) for free.  The tickets will be capped at 30 per person.  I ask that you support this if you are able.  The raffle tickets will be given to you in Ontario and the drawing will be in Hopewell, VA.  If you would like to purchase the Hotel raffle tickets, please make check out to RFTW and send to:

Ken Dugas

9849 Loblolly Pines Lane

Denham Springs, La. 70726

You may also electronically send the money through Zelle.  Use my phone 225-405-2735.  Please send me an email at ken.dugas@rftw.us to let me know if you are sending money.

Fundraising is so important for our mission.  I want to thank everyone who is working on fundraising and all of you who support their efforts!  I would like to share another example of what people do for our Mission.  Bob “Captain” Mazzone is Southern route’s RGC.  He has made beautiful stained-glass tributes to RFTW for each route.  These works of art will be raffled off and the proceeds will be going to support the schools that support our mission.  Thank you Captain for sharing your talents and generosity with us!  Tickets for this will be sold out of the merchandise trailer beginning in Ontario.

Our Camping Coordinator position has been filled.  Welcome Darlene “Rachel” Taylor to the leadership team.  Thank you for volunteering to serve in this capacity for our mission.

I have begun the dreadful task of exercising! Lol!  Unfortunately, I am not in my best shape but will be working on that.. May will be here before you know it.  I encourage you all to take care of yourself and make sure you and your bike are in good shape for this mission.    The journey is much easier and enjoyable when you are in good shape.

Pre-registration for Midway is now over 220 bikes.  Please register if you have not done so.  Pre-registration helps us plan and be better prepared.

If you are a team leader, please make sure that you are checking the leadership list on the Midway Hub on RFTW.US.  Make sure your list is accurate and notify me if any changes or additions need to be made. 

Have I told you lately…………….. I love my RFTW Midway Family!  😊

Honor, Hope & Healing

Respectfully,

Ken “Six String” Dugas
Midway RC

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Midway Route Coordinator – Newsletter – January -2020 update

Happy New Year Midway!

I have an important update concerning the Holiday Inn in Albuquerque. The hotel has been bought by Best Western. The phone number is correct and remains the same. However, If you made reservations using your IGH points, your reservation has been cancelled! You should have received an email. However, I want to know that everyone is aware of this change. You need to contact the hotel to give them a credit card and reserve your room again. If you did not use IGH points for your reservation, you are good to go.

I also want to notify everyone who wants to participate in our Midway Hotel raffle that the raffle tickets will be limited at $100.00. If you would like to donate more for fuel that is fine but the raffle tickets will be capped. This is because we have had people donate up to $5,000 and we cannot give raffle tickets for every donation. A limit on the tickets will give everyone a chance at having fair odds of winning.

The route has been finalized, the hotel lists are published and work is continuing behind the scenes. We are on track with our preparations and are looking forward to a great 2020 RFTW.

Wishing you all a Blessed and Happy 2020!

Ken “Six String” Dugas
Midway Route Coordinator

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Midway Route Coordinator – Newsletter – January – 2020

Happy New Year RFTW Midway!

I decided to send out my January Newsletter a few days early to give everyone an update on the hotel list situation. The hotel lists for all routes will be released and published on the RFTW.US website at 0800 pst (California time) on January 1, 2020. We all know that the hotels will be slammed with phone calls for reservations. We have a limited number of rooms available to us on the RFTW block of rooms. Please be patient with the hotels and be polite. Remember, it is “Mission before self”! You are representing RFTW. Please be good ambassadors for our mission. If there are no rooms available in the RFTW block, you may want to try to get one on your own. Our hotel coordinator did a great job trying to increase the number of rooms blocked for us where he could. Except for Flagstaff, all the hotels are close to each other.
Speaking of hotels, I would like to announce my last personal fundraising effort to help pay for fuel for our Midway route. This is something I think everyone will like and I hope will participate and support. Many people want to donate to RFTW. This is a way that you can do that and get something in return. Except for Ontario and Arlington, this fundraiser will pay for your hotels across the country! The estimate for the hotel cost came out to be approximately $1,000.00, so the prize for this raffle will be $1,000.00! Wouldn’t it be nice to have your hotel costs covered? The cost per ticket is $10.00 or you can purchase 10 tickets for $50.00! If you purchase $100.00 worth, you will get 25 tickets. All money made from this raffle will be returned to our riders in fuel! If you purchase 10 tickets or more before the end of February, you will receive 2 extra tickets (per 10) for free. I ask that you support this if you are able. The raffle tickets will be given to you in Ontario and the drawing will be in Hopewell, VA.
Our State Coordinators and our Promotion Team continue to work on donations and fundraising. We also have others on the route working on fundraising and donations. I really appreciate everyone’s efforts! I want to have all the fuel for our route donated or prepaid for our riders. It makes our fuel stops very efficient and is nice for our riders.
So far, our Stafford Air & Space Museum patch has not been very successful. We have only sold 24 patches. If you would like to purchase a patch ($25/ea) or would like to purchase the Hotel raffle tickets, please make check out to RFTW and send to:
Ken Dugas
9849 Loblolly Pines Lane
Denham Springs, La. 70726
You may also electronically send the money through Zelle. Use my phone 225-405-2735. Please send me an email at ken.dugas@rftw.us to let me know if you are sending money.

We have finalized our Midway route. This week, we had video meetings to review maps of all our stops. Our Road Guard Captain, ARGC and Advanced Team leader are doing a fantastic job for us. I cannot adequately express my appreciation to them for all their hard work! Ray “Cornman” is doing a great job as ARC and I appreciate the work he is doing with our State Coordinators. It truly takes a team to make this mission a success. I may be biased but I think I am surrounded by the best team in the history of RFTW! 😊

I am looking for a volunteer to be our camping coordinator. We have the camping sites lined up. This person will make themselves available to assist the campers on our route. Please let me know if you would be interested in this position.

As we approach this new year, many of us make new year’s resolutions. Some good ones would be to get in shape and work on your riding skills. This journey across the country can take a toll on you. Prepare yourself to have a safe, fun and rewarding trip. It is a privilege to be a part of this great RFTW mission. Let’s all do our part to make it a great 2020 Run.

We are better when we work together!

If you are a team leader, please make sure that you are checking the leadership list on the Midway Hub on RFTW.US. Make sure your list is accurate and notify me if any changes or additions need to be made. I am asking for your help in keeping this list accurate and up to date.

I wish you all a blessed and Happy New Year.

Have I told you lately…………….. I love my RFTW Midway Family! 😊

Honor, Hope & Healing
Respectfully,
Ken “Six String” Dugas
Midway RC

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Midway Route Coordinator – News -December- 2019

Season’s greetings RFTW family,

My December update brings exciting news. I am pleased to announce that we will be adding a parade ride through Tucumcari, New Mexico! Mayor Ruth Litchfield and the town are very excited about supporting our mission and welcoming us. I always find it exciting to ride on historic Route 66 and I am happy that we will be able to do this and give this opportunity to those who have not had this experience. Mayor Ruth tells us that we will have excellent LEO support and the citizens will be on the streets showing support for our mission. The Mayor is also working on getting a fuel stop donated for us. I hope she is successful with the donation. It is very gratifying to see the positive affect our mission has had in the area. Mayor Ruth actually approached us asking us to come to her town! This would never happen if we did not ride with respect, show appreciation to our supporters, work professionally with LEOs and represent our mission well. I thank all our riders and leadership teams for this! I am very proud to be a part of the Midway team.
Midway’s hotel list is complete and has been submitted to the BOD. I thank Jerry Wilkins for all his hard work on getting the hotel contracts done for us. The hotel list should be published Jan. 1, 2020.

With that said, I must address a negative issue. It has been brought to my attention that some people have been contacting the hotels trying to make reservations. When the hotels let them know that they cannot make reservations at this time under RFTW, some have been treated very rudely and disrespectful. Please remember that the hotels are doing what they have been instructed. This type of rude and disrespectful behavior is not the culture of RFTW Midway route and will not be tolerated! Remember that all of you associated with RFTW represent RFTW and need to be good ambassadors for our mission. It is a professional and respectful representation of our mission that allows good things, such as Tucumcari, to happen for our mission. Be forewarned, anyone treating people rudely or disrespectfully while representing RFTW will be given their registration money back and not be allowed on the Midway route. Bad behavior causes harm to our mission! We must be “Mission above self”.
The route cards will be given a final review this week as we are getting ready to send our route information out for publishing and printing. Once the route cards are finalized, we will review and update the Itinerary. May will be here before we know it!

I would like to add a leadership position to Midway for 2020. A major part of our mission is to support our veterans and aid in their healing. We all know that RFTW is an emotional “roller coaster ride”. It has its ups and downs and I am so proud to see the support the Midway family gives to those in need. With that said, I want to address a personal issue for some. I know that RFTW can be a very tough time and may create extra challenges for those who struggle with alcohol use. I feel these people need extra support to help them if they struggle. I am looking for a “Friends of Bill” coordinator. This person would make sure that he knows when and where there are AA meetings scheduled along our route for those who use AA. People come to this mission for healing. I don’t want it to take someone into a darker place. We need to be there for these people. If you are familiar with this and would be interested in this position, please contact me. We are family, and family is there for each other.

I would like to thank all of you who support our fundraising activities. The Stafford Air & Space museum patches have come in and are being mailed out this week. This patch will identify you as a rider of the RFTW route that left its permanent mark at the Air & Space museum. I know it is the holidays, but we have only sold 24 patches. The cost is $25.00 per patch. $5 pays for the patch and $20 goes towards our fuel cost. Keep in mind, your support of the patch and most of the cost comes back to you as prepaid fuel. Please consider purchasing this patch as everyone will benefit from the fuel stops.
If interested, mail payment ($25 per patch) made out to RFTW to:
Ken Dugas
9849 Loblolly Pines Lane
Denham Springs, LA 70726
You may also send the money electronically transferred through Zelle. (the account is tied to my number (225-405-2735) If you send money through Zelle, email your mailing address to me at ken.dugas@rftw.us
If you are a team leader, please make sure that you are checking the leadership list on the Midway Hub on RFTW.US. Make sure your list is accurate and notify me if any changes or additions need to be made. I am asking for your help in keeping this list accurate and up to date.

We are better when we work together!
I wish you all a blessed and Merry Christmas season.

Have I told you lately…………….. I love my RFTW Midway Family! 😊
Honor, Hope and Healing

Respectfully,
Ken “Six String” Dugas
Midway RC

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Midway Route Coordinator News – November 2019

Greetings Midway family!
As I write this November newsletter, I am reflecting on the upcoming Thanksgiving Holiday and how truly blessed I am. I am so grateful for all of God’s blessings including the privilege I have of being a part of this Run for the Wall family. I am also very thankful to live in the USA and I thank all of you veterans and current military for all you have done to protect our great country and our freedom. I wish you all a Happy Veterans Day! Thank you for your service.
2020 plans for Midway are progressing well. Details are being worked on and our route should be finalized soon. All our night stops are confirmed including our new stop in Smithville, NC. Our leadership teams are looking good and I thank all of you for volunteering to serve our RFTW mission. Minor adjustments are being made to allow a little more quality time at the Stafford Air & Space Museum and the Marine Corps Museum.
I would like to thank all of you who support our fundraising activities. I am doing my best to get our fuel prepaid for the Midway route. I am pleased to announce that we raised $2,900 towards our fuel from our Seymour Johnson Air Force Base patch! That stop was a very special first for RFTW. If you would like one, please order now as they will no longer be made or sold after November 30, 2019.
2019 Midway left a permanent mark on the Stafford Air & Space museum. Last year we raised money to have a RFTW brick paver installed at the museum. The brick paver will be installed before we arrive there again in 2020 for us all to see. Glenn “Wombat” and I would like to thank the 2019 Midway riders for their support and contributions that allowed us to leave this permanent RFTW mark at the museum.
In recognition and remembrance of this occasion, we have made a patch for everyone on the 2019 Midway route to be able to purchase as another fundraiser for our fuel. I am hoping that we can, at least, duplicate the success we had for the Air Force base patch. I have attached a picture of the patch for you to see. This patch will identify you as a rider of the RFTW route that left its permanent mark at the Air & Space museum. We will do the same thing as the AFB patch. It will cost $25.00 per patch. $5 pays for the patch and $20 goes towards our fuel cost. With your support, we could pay for possibly more than 3 fuel stops from the sale of these patches! Keep in mind, your support of the patch and most of the cost comes back to you as prepaid fuel. Please consider purchasing this patch as everyone will benefit from the fuel stops. If you have not purchased the Seymour Johnson AFB patch, feel free to order both!
If interested, mail payment ($25 per patch) made out to RFTW to:
Ken Dugas
9849 Loblolly Pines Lane
Denham Springs, LA 70726
You may also send the money electronically transferred through Zelle. (the account is linked to my number (225-405-2735) If you send money through Zelle, email your mailing address to me at ken.dugas@rftw.us

If you are a volunteer, please make sure that you are checking the leadership list on the Midway Hub on RFTW.US. We are placing orders for caps and supplies. Make sure your name is on the list. If not, please get with your team leader about having you added.
We have a fantastic team on Midway and together, we will make Midway 2020 a special year. The Midway family is all about teamwork. It is why Midway is so special. We are better together!

I have I told you lately…………….. I love my RFTW Midway Family! 😊

Honor, Hope & Healing

Ken “Six String” Dugas
RFTW 2020 Route Coordinator, Midway / ARC , Sandbox
Midway Road Guard Captain, 2016, 2017, 2018 / ARC, Midway 2019, ARC Sandbox Recon
Southern Road Guard, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Southern Route 2010, 2011
Cell: (225) 405-2735
Email: ken.dugas@rftw.us

Four Routes, One Mission!

Proud Father of a U.S. Marine and U.S. Sailor!
“In God we Trust!”

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Midway Route Coordinator News – October 2019

Hello Midway Family!

As always, I pray that all is well with you and your families.  I would like to give you my latest updates for our 2020 Midway route.

Our leadership team is now listed on the Midway hub .  Please review the list and let me know if there are any additions or changes that need to be made.  I am pleased that our leadership teams are almost complete. However, we would like to have a few more people for our fuel team and our road guard team.

My RC video is now posted on the Midway hub.  As many of you know, I had issues accepting the RC position because I am not a veteran.  I always felt that a veteran should be the one addressing the communities we visit.  With that said, I will do my best to represent you veterans well.  I hope you are pleased with the video and my representation of all of you and our Midway route.

We do have a few changes to the route.  Our Fayetteville night will be moved to Smithville, NC.  This will eliminate the backtracking we had to do from Fayetteville.  This change is confirmed and finalized.  Another change will be a move from Ashland, VA to Hopewell.  This change will eliminate the long ride to the hotel from Hopewell to Ashland.  There are a few details being worked on to finalize this change.

I am pleased to announce that we will be adding a visit to two VA hospitals in Tennessee as well as a wreath laying ceremony and visit to the museum in Lebanon, TN.  These additions will be visited by break out platoons. Lebanon will also be donating a fuel stop for us.

I want to thank all of you who have supported our Seymour Johnson AFB “Riding the Runway” patch fundraiser.  So far, we have raised over $2,900.00 towards our fuel stops from this patch!

The RFTW brick paver we purchased for the Stafford Air & Space Museum is completed.  It should be installed soon.

I asked the BOD for approval to add the KIA/WIA logo to the website to be included with the POW/MIA logo.  I am grateful for their approval and it has been added to the website.  Now that we have the Sandbox route, I thought this was another good step to help join the older and newer generation warriors together.

The route is getting close to finalization.  I thank our State Coordinators and all of you for your support and efforts.

Have I told you lately…………………  I Love my Midway Family!

Sincerely,

Ken Dugas
2020 Midway Route Coordinator

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Midway Route Coordinator News – September 2019

The Midway leadership list has been posted on the RFTW.US website.  Please review your information to make sure everything is correct.  Let me know if you find any changes that need to be made.  Please let me know if you have any additions or deletions so that I can keep this list updated and accurate.

Our teams are filling up well and must be complete by November 15th.  Our biggest need is the fuel team.  If you know of anyone who meets the qualifications and would be interested, please have them contact Jerry Wilkins, Advance Team Leader.  His contact info is on the website.

Our State Coordinators continue to work hard getting things set up for their states.  Our Team Leaders are finalizing their teams and our Road Guard Captain is working the route.

As a team, we will accomplish many good things for 2020.

I want to thank all of you who have supported our Seymour Johnson AFB “Riding the Runway” patch fundraiser.  So far, we have raised over $2,600.00 towards our fuel stops from this patch!

I sent a thank you letter to Col. Yates along with a couple of the patches.  I am hopeful that we will be able to have the runway experience again in 2020.

I have also received other individual donations for fuel, and I want to express my appreciation and gratitude to all of you them!

We have a few more things planned that we are working on.  With that said, don’t forget that any fuel donations are a generous gift and should not be expected.  It is every rider’s responsibility to be prepared to pay for all their fuel.  It is very efficient for the route and a nice perk for the riders when we can avoid cash exchanges at the fuel stations.  Everyone’s support of our fuel fundraisers is greatly appreciated.

I will be attending the reunion in Kerrville, Tx on September 20th and 21st.  It is hosted by the Southern route and I look forward to seeing all of them.  Hope to see some of you there.

I would have to call our first reunion, hosted by Midway, a big success!   I am very pleased to say that we had representation for all routes with us!  That’s what it is all about.  It is about us being a Run for the Wall family.  We had a great time in the Nashville area, and I want to thank Ron “Sky” for all the work he did to put the reunion together.  Also, a big thank you and job well done to Don “Ten-A-See” for leading our rides.  Thank all of you who came to the reunion.  Those who did not make it were missed.

The Mayor was there, and we presented him a certificate of appreciation.  He gave us a proclamation declaring the weekend, “Run for the Wal Weekend”.  A representative from the Police department was there as well and we presented the department an appreciation plaque.

The feedback from the reunion was very positive and the votes were in favor of having it again next year! My favorite part was, of course, the Jack Daniel’s tour!

Something new for Ontario for 2020.  We will have a hydration truck available with water at the hotel.  We are encouraging everyone to make sure they start hydrating early.  There will be no excuse for anyone to start the run not well hydrated.  This is a big safety concern.  I will encourage everyone to take advantage of this and drink plenty of water to be well hydrated for the start of our journey.

Have I told you lately that I love you?  If not………………………………

Love my Midway family!  😊

Thank you all for volunteering to help and support this great mission.

Ken “Six String” Dugas
RFTW Route Coordinator, Midway 2020

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Midway Route Coordinator News – May 2019

It’s May!

The long awaited departure date is in sight, May 15, 2019, three routes one mission!

I wish to extend a special thank you and recognition to the following State Coordinators, who unselfishly and tirelessly planned their state events to ensure a welcoming and memorable experience:

Carol Olmstead, California State Coordinator
Roy Meek, Arizona State Coordinator
Tina Reeves, New Mexico State Coordinator
Daniel Stewart, Texas State Coordinator
Dennis Freie, Oklahoma State Coordinator
Ron King, Tennessee State Coordinator
Christina Roulston, Arkansas State Coordinator
Richard House, North Carolina State Coordinator
Shelia Tyus, Virginia State Coordinator
John Staub, Washington DC Coordinator

There are many individuals who assisted the State Coordinators and are too many to list. Our sincere thanks and gratefulness is extended to everyone behind the scenes who have made this mission a success. A tremendous amount of work went into each state, each event, and each day. Please extend your gratitude to these individuals when you cross paths. We could not do anything without their hard work, diligence, planning, time and insight.

We have some great leadership along the route. Please adhere to the guidance and instructions of Leadership, particularly Road Guards and Platoon Leaders.

See you in Ontario, CA!

Gratefully,

Glenn “Wombat” Waggoner Jr.
2019 Midway Route Coordinator
“Our Duty to Remember”

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Midway Route Coordinator News – April 2019

Fellow Participants,

We are a month and a half away from departure. I for one am in great anticipation for this year’s mission. We have great leadership assisting in various roles, State Coordinators and Assistance preparing for our arrival.

I received some good news about Hopewell VA, they do not want us to change our plans. How grateful can you be for a wonderful town and group of people despite their tragic losses. We should reflect on our blessings and to be blessed to bless others. This makes the mission all the more important.

The Ontario Itinerary is posted and yes it is correct. Only one-half hour for FNG meeting, but more will be covered in the “Mandatory” Safety Meeting that follows the FNG Meeting. I would like leadership to think of this half-hour as a meet-n-greet time. A time to shake hands and welcome the participants.

Last year’s Midway Route Coordinator, Mike “Bandit” Huber and his bride, Melanie “Sassie” Huber have donated and will be auctioning two steers for RFTW Midway fundraising.

The auction will be on Monday, May 13th at 5 p.m. at the Gateway Hotel in Ontario for two whole steers. Mike “Bandit” Huber will be the auctioneer.

Proceeds will go to Falcon, N. C., Children’s Home and Milan, New Mexico, Elementary School hosts to RFTW Midway Route. The steers will be auctioned separately and the money raised will go to the school designated for each steer. Cost of processing/shipping is above winning bid and is the responsibility of winning bidder(s). There’s even an option of leaving the steers on the ranch to live out a PC, non-life threatening existence and just donating the money.

Riders and support are all encouraged to form up some creatively-named teams and join in the bidding fun while raising money for our future leaders!

The parade for the Marine Corp Barracks parade is posted to the RFTW website.Check the website for details.

See you all very soon, in the meantime be safe and God Bless!

Glenn “Wombat” Waggoner Jr.,
2019 Midway Route Coordinator
“Our Duty to Remember”

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Midway Route Coordinator News – March 2019

Dear Participants,

We are about 75 days away from departure and time flies faster as that day approaches.

We have made significant progress toward departure; Midway Route is secure, State Coordinators have worked hard to make this a memorable mission and final draft of our itinerary is being reviewed and will be published to the website there soon after wards.

Most have heard of the recent news about the Moose Lodge in Hopewell, VA. It was destroyed in an early morning fire in late February. This is not just a lodge, but a community center servicing Hopewell. It has a great history of over 65 years in the community. A tremendous amount of history, artifacts and memorabilia was destroyed. The lodge has been a welcomed support to Midway RFTW since inception in 2013. We have some fond memories there with the Tussing Elementary School signing patriot songs, local fire and police support with their vehicles and welcoming bagpipes, and who can forget the Dancing Grandma’s! The staff are an incredible group of people and this has likely been a shock to them all. We will not alter our plans to Hopewell at this time, but may have to look to another venue based upon State Coordinator recommendations. Regardless, we will love and pray upon them and take up a collection of some sort when that time comes. They plan on rebuilding the lodge.

I am very excited about this year’s mission. With a incredible and fine group of people supporting the Midway, how could anyone ask for anything else? I am very proud of the people who have stepped up to serve the RFTW and MIdway Route.

Thank you for allowing me to be of service.

Glenn “Wombat” Waggoner Jr.,
2019 Midway Route Coordinator
“Our Duty to Remember”