Name: Marvin Potts
Road Name: Emtee
FNG Year: 2013
How many times have you been All the Way? 2017, 2018 (aborted) And how many times have you been a Participant? 2013, 2016, 2019
On Which Route (Routes) did you ride? Central
What is your favorite Run for the Wall memory?
It was my FNG year and I had joined up in Corydon IN. Our first stop was Robley Rex VA Center. As I walked in to meet patients I am greeted by a worker who asks me if I would come with her to see a patient on the oncology floor. She takes me, alone, to the elevator which we take to the top floor. She explained to me there was a particular patient who requested a visit from one of “the bikers.” I’m nervous. I’m on my first stop … only 30 miles into my FNG run. I walk into the room to see a pale, thin, bed-ridden cancer patient. I put a smile on my face and introduce myself to the man who will forever define the RFTW mission for me. My first words to him were a mindless “How ya doing?” but his reply took my breath away. He said, “Not good partner. The doc just told me my time is measured in days.”
I spent the next 30-40 minutes talking to him about his time in Vietnam, the struggles he had upon returning, and all the Harleys he had owned over the years. He then told me I better get going or I might get left behind. In all honesty, I didn’t care. I thought about “tapping out” then and there and continue visiting with him. But then he asked if I would ride for him and remember him when I got to The Wall. I told him it would be my honor. As I walked out of the room he had one more request … to rev my bike so he could hear it all the way up there.
About a week after completing my FNG run, I received a call from his cousin … he had passed. His cousin told me that he constantly talked about all the bikes rolling in and the “young man” who graciously spent time with him that day. He told me that as we left that day, he heard someone rev their bike and he knew that had to be Emtee.
Have you held any positions as a volunteer on the Run? Tailgunner
Are you a Military Veteran, or do you have a military background or a relationship with a member of the Military? I’m not a veteran but I am a 30 yr Air Force civilian and the father of two Army soldiers.
Are you a Gold Star or Blue Star family member? Blue Star x 2.
What inspired you to participate in the RFTW the first time? I was introduced to RFTW in 2012 after a PGR mission by Ken “Catfish” Ward. (Never underestimate the power of your representation of RFTW!) My oldest son earned a Purple Heart in Afghanistan and I wanted to honor his service. Also, a small town near home has the distinction of having the highest per capita Vietnam War casualty rate (Beallsville Ohio). Those 6 along with the other 5 from my area are known as the 11 Sons of Monroe County. I ride for them.
What brought you back? I only rode 3 days that first year but the impact was deep and everlasting.
Have you participated in Rolling Thunder? 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Are you planning on participating in Rolling to Remember (the AMVETS event that replaces Rolling Thunder)? No, doing Sandbox.
Give us a few words about “WHY YOU RIDE”.
I ride for the vet at Robley Rex (name withheld). I ride for the 11 Sons of Monroe Co. I ride to honor my sons. I ride for and with my best friend, Dave Cain. I ride for those who can’t.
Anything else to Add?
My Facebook RFTW page is “20 Days in May”