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Southern Route, 2017 – Day 4

Odessa, Texas – Grand Prairie, Texas 349 Miles

Yes, folks a full day of riding and we are STILL in Texas! But, Texas has been good to us. The weather has been perfect, blue skies and sunshine, but not hot.

The day began with a delicious home cooked breakfast at the American Legion Post 430. Followed by the rider’s meeting which included the perfunctory hand signal review and welcoming the new FNGs. We had quite a few this morning. That’s because Texas is such an amazing, patriotic state!

We visited two memorials in the morning, (I told you Texans are amazing)! The Permian Basin and the Big Spring Memorial. The Permian Basin Memorial is a very emotional place for Vietnam Veterans to visit. I have been told the way the grass blows in the wind with the helicopter coming in for a landing and the pose of the soldiers in the statue, takes the Veterans right back to what Vietnam was like. It is always a favorite stop for the riders.

Permian Basin Vietnam Memorial

We also visited the Big Spring Memorial where riders participated in a wreath laying ceremony. A bag piper player concluded the wreath laying with the playing of taps and Amazing Grace.

Amazing Grace on the bag pipes at Big Spring memorial

We stopped in for lunch at the Railhead Building in Colorado City. What an amazing little town! I think time has passed it by, it is a very quaint and hospitable town. The lunchtime entertainment included music by the Sweetwater Municipal Band and two solo performances one by Clancy White who sang “God Bless the USA”, always a favorite! Meghan Owen sang “Orange Colored Sky” which is a Nat King Cole Song (one of my favorites) but she put a very clever spin on it. The words go, “out of an orange colored sky”. While she was singing the song a slide show was showing behind her, depicting various military aircraft with an “orange colored sky” as the backdrop. Both girls did a great job!

Riders departed Colorado City for Grand Prairie, Texas with a brief stop in Cisco. Riding through the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex area was exhilirating. I think all the riders were wide awake for that leg of the journey. We arrived at the Grand Prairie, Dubiski Career High School right on time. We enjoyed a short program, awarded a scholarship, handed out thank you plaques and called it a night.

Riding across Texas is such a pleasant experience. This year with the great weather it has been really a treat. As I was riding along the flat Texas country side, I noticed how West Texas is dotted with oil wells and cattle chutes, made me smile. I really enjoyed it when a ???????? train passed our ???????? train and both parties honked and waved. Only in Texas!

Tonight’s quote is from General Norman Schwarzkopf “As young West Point cadets, our motto was ‘duty, honor, country.’ But it was in the field from the rice paddies of Southeast Asia to the sands of the Middle East, that I learned the motto’s fullest meaning. There I saw valiant young Americans of every race, creed and background fight, and sometimes die for ‘duty, honor and their country’.”

God Bless America and God Bless our Veterans!????????

Kristine “Eyes” Wood