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Central Route – Day 11 – In DC

It was a beautiful day.  Started at 65and hit the mid 80s.  Since only FNGs can ride into Arlington Cemtary, we needed to get there and walk to the Tomb of the Unknow Soldier for the laying of the wreath.  If you have ever been, you will see field after field like this.

Soldiers placed nearly a quarter-million U.S. flags at Arlington National Cemetery on Thursday as part of a Memorial Day tradition. The event is known as “flags in.” More than 230,000 marble headstones line the landscape of the cemetery across 624 acres.

 The RFTW team is given instruction for layingto the wreath.



 Changing of the guards.  If you ever go to DC, please take time to see this.



RFTW heads to the Lincoln Memorial for a group shot.
There are thousand of bikes all over the grass fields.  This is only one of them
Gunny taking pics of the crowd.
 Looking from the top step of the Lincoln Memorial.
OH MY!!!!!
 Once the pic is complete, the RFTW riders head for the wall.  You see many member tracing names of family and friends
If you remember, there were lots of bios read and people carried them across the country.  Names were found on the wall.
Then you see many of them placed under their name.


The 3 rout coordinators lay the RFTW at the Apex of the Wall.
 Once an FNG has completed their mission, their FNG pin is turned upside down.




POW / MIA Poem
We need to remember them every day.
They went to fight in a place so far away,
They gave their all when their country sent out a call
Not ever knowing that their name would end up on the wall,
No matter how we honor them no matter what we do
We should always remember that they paid the highest price
For the red, white and blue.
So when you look up at the flag flying in the wind on a clear blue day
Remember it’s there because of the

I hope this blog has given you some idea of our mission. It is a grueling trip.   Long day, short night, 4;30
AM wake up calls…. This starts to wear on you.  Our trip was only 10 days. 
Think of our troops in extreme hot and cold days.  They have lack of
sleep, long days……they stand to keep us safe a lot longer than 10 days.
Here are
a few fun facts about our trip
– Temperature ranged 31-104
– We traveled in 14 states + Washington DC
– From Loveland, OH to Ontario, CA to DC  – 5619 miles
– Thanks for all the thoughts and prayer, NO hail this year and very little rain.
We did not pay for meals on our mission. Every town we stayed in welcomed us,
fed us, and prayed for our safety.  The support, encouragement,
respect that the Americans have for the mission is incredible.  There is
an unbelievable amount of time hanging banners, kids making bracelet, making
pocket patches, hanging flags on the over passes, closing down streets,
organizing volunteer for meal, setting up fuel stops. and the list goes on.

100s, 1000s of hours given by so many to make this happen: route coordinator,
state coordinators, missing man coordinator, staging team, fuel team, hydration
team, road guards, medical personnel…..and the riders themselves.  The
logistics to get that many people across the country, coordinated with all the
towns for escorts, gas stops, parking, …. involve so many volunteers.


We continually asked each other: what time is it? what time zone are we in? what
day is it? What state are we in?  But there is one thing we knew the
answer to: what was our mission?


Mission Statement of RFTW : 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

I have sent many quotes thru the last 10 day.  Here are my last two:

       U – Unselfish
      S – Service to
      A – America
It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.
Rather we should thank God that such men lived.
                      General George Patton
On the Run, we said the Pledge every day.  I see this flag
and have taken pictures of it all week. Every time I see it waving in the air,
it is telling me I am free.  And that right is protected by our men and
women.  Let’s continue to try and bring them all home.
I especially want to thank my husband for such an incredible journey.
One more set of prayer please, and that is to get everyone home safely from DC, and continue to pray
for all service men and women, past and present. 
I leave you with this song:
Proud to be an American
(by: Lee Greenwood) 
If tomorrow all the things were gone
I’d worked for all my life
And I had to start again
With just my children and my wife
I’d thank my lucky stars
To be living here today
Cause the flag still stands for freedom
Andthey can’t take that away
 And I’m proud to be an American
Where at least I know I’m free
And I won’t forget the men who died
Who gave that right to me
And I gladly stand up
Next to you and defend her still today
Cause there ain’t no doubt I love this land
God bless the USA.
From the lakes of Minnesota
To the hills of Tennessee
Across the plains of Texas
From sea to shining sea
From Detroit down to Houston,
And New York to L.A
Well there’s pride in every American heart
And its time we stand and say
That I’m proud to be an American
Where at least I know I’m free
And I won’t forget the men who died
Who gave that right to me
And I gladly stand up
Next to you and defend her still today
Cause there ain’t no doubt I love this land
bless the USA.



1 thought on “Central Route – Day 11 – In DC

  1. Thank you Jean, you did an amazing job!

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