NVAO Update – 6 Jun 24

NVAO Members,

The dust has settled and everyone who rode/drove on the 2024 National Veterans Awareness Ride has made it home from one of the best rides ever. The weather was perfect. No bikes had to be put into the chase trailer. Everyone made it without any major physical ailments. A few of riders reminded themselves that they are not 18 years old anymore.

Because the weather was so nice, we were able to visit outside with a huge number of vets. Also, because all of the VA Hospitals and Homes are open and expecting us, we had access to floors on most of the facilities. Same with the students at the schools we visit. We met with them outside and inside. And the memorial services were orchestrated without a hitch.

Before we go into a few highlights, thanks are in order for a few people:

Many thanks to the State Coordinators and Assistant Coordinators for the work they put in to making sure that everything is right. (CA – Wayne Worden and Fred Corcoran, NV Jerry Conner, UT – Jayson Stephenson, WY – Kat and Mike Tipton, Lexi Lamb, NE – Bill Luft, IA – Patrick Martindale, IL – Ken Richardson, IN – Mike Stupar, OH – Tony Cunningham, Dave Clemmons, WV – Eddie Shinn, MD – Steve Moore, DC Steve Moore.

The Staff of the 2024 NVAR did an excellent job fulfilling their responsibilities. Ride Coordinator – Jerry Conner, Ride Leader – Steve Moore, Missing Man Coordinator – Tony Ivins, Road Guard Captain, Pat  Martindale, Tail Gunner/Co-Safety Officer – Dan Kress, Chase Truck Poo Bahs – Mike Tipton, Ed Kintzele, Bruce Manner, Chaplain – Wayne Worden, Wreath Laying Leader – Bill Luft, Merchandise – Kat Tipton, Donna Williams, Sandy Kintzele, Sit Reps – Libby Taylor-Worden, Ride Registration – Eddie Shinn, Webmaster – Roger Granbois, Awards Angel, Karla Lloyd, Motel Manager – Sandy Kintzele.

Thanks to everyone who participated in our raffles:  The winner of the shotgun was ShanEll Stephenson from Clinton, UT. The winners of the three quilts were Rick Davis from Highland, IN and Sandy Kintzele from Granger, IN and Glenn Johnson from Brandywine, MD.

A warm thanks to the quilting group (Carole Park, Mary Weeks, Carol Hunter, Leslie Rodrick, Tricia Kirk, and Marna Duncab in Colfax, California that made 26 lap quilts, two of which were handed out to veterans at each of the hospitals and homes that we visit. 

And, finally, thanks to Roger Granbois for donating the Vietnam Wall globe, given to Mary Van Horne, the Marine desk set, given to Dan Kress and the pocket watch given to Bob Ashmore.

Attached are a few photos that represent some high points of the NVAR.

One of the rewarding ceremonies that we have is the “Welcoming Home” medal that we award veterans who have served in the military during the global war on terror. The first photo shows Fairal Warren and another NVAR rider presenting the medals to three recipients.

The second photo shows Mike Rinowski and Wayne Worden talking with a vet at the Cheyenne, WY VAMC. I believe this was the vet who was very interested in Mike’s painted front fender showing a map of Vietnam. They talked for a long time about distant memories that seem like just yesterday.

The third photo is the Leaps and Bounds pre-school 4 year olds who came out after the NVAR wreath laying in Evanston, WY. The children said the Pledge of Allegiance (Perfectly). It’s ok to have a tear in your eye when something like this happens.

The fourth photo is the NVAR wreath laying squad laying a wreath at the memorial in North Platte, NE.

The fifth photo is a group of NVAR participants enjoying a cool one at lunch in the Tun Tavern at the National Museum of the United States Marine Museum. This was a really amazing visit that we made on Sunday morning, May 26. We¬† highly recommend a visit to this museum if you are ever in the DC area. By the way, the original Tun Tavern is where the US Marine Corps was founded in the 1770’s. None of the NVAR riders was present for that occasion.

The sixth photo was taken after the NVAR wreath laying at the Tomb of the Unknown at Arlington National Cemetery. It was a beautiful day for a wreath laying to remember those who came before us.

The seventh attachment is the latest NVAO Members Spreadsheet. (Contact Jerry for the latest copy)

Finally, if you haven’t already visited the Sit Reps section of the National Veterans Awareness Organization website (nvao.us), please check it out. Libby Taylor-Worden took on the challenge of doing the Sit Reps this year. It’s a big deal and very important during the NVAR and for years afterwards. The Sit Reps are daily logs of the NVAR. Libby did a fantastic job. She is a wonderful, poetic journalist. The Sit Reps also include photos of each day of the ride.

That’s it for now.

Be careful out there.

The NVAO Board of Directors

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