NOTE: The commentaries listed here are my personal opinion's only, and are not meant to reflect those of all the Patriot Guard Riders individually, or the PGR organization.
Monday April 16th, 2018
***The Vietnam Wall***
A little history most people will never know.
Interesting Veterans Statistics off the Vietnam Memorial Wall.
There are 58,267 names now listed on that polished black wall, including those added in 2010.
The names are arranged in the order in which they were taken from us by date and within each date the names are alphabetized. It is hard to believe it is 36 years since the last casualties.
The first known casualty was Richard B. Fitzgibbon, of North Weymouth, Mass. Listed by the U.S. Department of Defense as having been killed on June 8, 1956. His name is listed on the Wall with that of his son, Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Richard B. Fitzgibbon III, who was killed on Sept. 7, 1965.
There are three sets of fathers and sons on the Wall.
39,996 on the Wall were just 22 or younger.
8,283 were just 19 years old.
The largest age group, 33,103 were 18 years old.
12 soldiers on the Wall were 17 years old.
5 soldiers on the Wall were 16 years old.
One soldier, PFC Dan Bullock was 15 years old.
997 soldiers were killed on their first day in Vietnam.
1,448 soldiers were killed on their last day in Vietnam.
31 sets of brothers are on the Wall.
31 sets of parents lost two of their sons.
54 soldiers attended Thomas Edison High School in Philadelphia. I wonder why so many from one school.
8 Women are on the Wall. Nursing the wounded.
244 soldiers were awarded the Medal of Honor during the Vietnam War; 153 of them are on the Wall.
Beallsville, Ohio with a population of 475 lost 6 of her sons.
West Virginia had the highest casualty rate per capita in the nation. There are 711 West Virginians on the Wall.
The Marines of Morenci - They led some of the scrappiest high school football an d basketball teams that the little Arizona copper town of Morenci (pop. 5,058) had ever known and cheered. They enjoyed roaring beer busts. In quieter moments, they rode horses along the Coronado Trail, stalked deer in the Apache National Forest. And in the patriotic camaraderie typical of Morenci's mining families, the nine graduates of Morenci High enlisted as a group in the Marine Corps. Their service began on Independence Day, 1966. Only 3 returned home.
The Buddies of Midvale - LeRoy Tafoya, Jimmy Martinez, Tom Gonzales were all boyhood friends and lived on three consecutive streets in Midvale, Utah on Fifth, Sixth and Seventh avenues. They lived only a few yards apart. They played ball at the adjacent sandlot ball field. And they all went to Vietnam. In a span of 16 dark days in late 1967, all three would be killed. LeRoy was killed on Wednesday, Nov. 22, the fourth anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination. Jimmy died less than 24 hours later on Thanksgiving Day. Tom was shot dead assaulting the enemy on Dec. 7, Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.
The most casualty deaths for a single day was on January 31, 1968; 245 deaths.
The most casualty deaths for a single month was May 1968; 2,415 casualties were incurred.
For most Americans who read this they will only see the numbers that the Vietnam War created. To those of us who survived the war, and to the families of those who did not, we see the faces, we feel the pain that these numbers created. We are, until we too pass away, haunted with these numbers, because they were our friends, fathers, husbands, wives, sons and daughters.
There are no noble wars, just noble warriors.
Sunday March 11th, 2018
***Are You The Invisible Biker***
"I never saw him. He came out of nowhere!" Probably the most common statement heard at a collision between an automobile and a motorcyclist. It’s the statement made by the driver of the auto because the motorcyclist is unconscious (or worse).
How can they not see the motorcyclist? Are they not looking? Are riders, somehow, invisible? Are they stupid automobile/truck driving people?
A lack of attention on the part of the driver does explain some of the car/bike collisions; the distracted driver, cell 'phones, unruly children, inattentional blindness, etc. All these can contribute BUT some responsibility may belong to the motorcyclist as well.
Before you go to get the rope to hang me for heresy, let me explain:
Motorcycles make up about 3% of the "normal" traffic flow.
People "see" what they expect to see; things like cars and trucks (97% of the traffic).
Motorcycles ARE much harder to see than cars/trucks because of their smaller size. A motorcycle can easily be "lost" in the background even with the headlight on. This is especially true now with so many autos having Daytime Running Lights (DRLs).
Many motorcycles are colors that lend themselves to blending into the environment.
Many motorcyclists wear dark colored clothing.
Riders often do not position themselves where they would be more easily seen.
Due to their size, it’s harder for a driver to determine the speed of an oncoming motorcycle even if they do see and recognize it.
Okay, that’s bad enough but in about 13% of the car/bike crashes, the rider made NO attempt to avoid the crash; didn’t brake, didn’t swerve, just rode right into it. Why? Well there are a couple of possible reasons:
Complacency – Biker wasn’t mentally prepared for the possibility.
Lack of skill – When faced with the impending crash, the rider didn’t know what to do. There’re a lot of riders out there that have never had any kind of formal rider training.
When you combine the items about visibility and perceptions I listed above with the fact that most motorcyclists are not skilled in emergency maneuvers (emergency stopping, swerving), you can see why the collisions occur.
So how can you NOT be the Invisible Biker?
STAY ALERT! Keep your head in the game and pay attention.
Position yourself so you can be seen and identified in the traffic stream.
Wear bright colors; retro-reflective gear is helpful after dark.
Consider getting a brightly colored bike or add items like additional lights to make it more conspicuous.
Watch your speed, particularly in congested areas.
PRACTICE your emergency maneuvers frequently.
Remember, even if you are doing everything “right.” many times they truly don’t see you. Perhaps you should consider this advice from my own 50 years of riding... “Don’t ride like you’re invisible; ride like they do see you, they are always going to do the wrong thing and they are planning how to take you out.”
Friday February 16th, 2018
I did not know it was this bad..
Hey, it was OK with Obummer, so what's the big deal? Whaddya mean, there are requirements ya may have to fulfill? Where the heck is my hot chocolate, my crayons & coloring book? I have a headache thinking about it all.................
A friend had an interesting conversation yesterday in the Redding Costco with a former gunner on a Sea Wolf helicopter during Vietnam. Really great guy and then he asked me: "If the country was in the same shape then that we are today, would you still have gone?" Kinda caught me flat-footed..................... I finally told him at least now we have MILITARY LEADERS actually leading the military and able to do their job without worrying about all those bullshit "Rules of engagement" restrictions or hurting some Arab's feelings. Screw it...if yer fired upon from an open window, put an H.E. round thru that same window to eliminate the problem & stop the threat. Trump is 180 degrees different on his dealings with the military and he would have had to search long & far to find a better commander of our troops than "Mad Dog Mattis."
The Pentagon on Wednesday announced a new “deploy or be removed” policy that could affect up to nearly 300,000 service members who have been non-deployable for the past 12 months.
“This new policy is a 12-month deploy or be removed policy,” Robert Wilkie, the undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, told the Senate Armed Services subcommittee on personnel and readiness on Wednesday.
The move comes after Defense Secretary Jim Mattis’ memo last year stressing the need to ensure that “everyone who comes into the service and everyone who stays in the service is world-wide deployable.”
The plan was first revealed by The Military Times.
According to various estimates, between 11 to 14 percent -- or well over 200,000 service members -- of the 2.1 million personnel serving on active duty, in the reserves or National Guard are currently non-deployable on any given day, hindering military readiness.
The new policy will have exceptions such as pregnancy while medical boards will continue to be able to grant exceptions for wounded personnel.
“The situation we face today is really unlike anything we have faced, certainly in the post-World War II era,” Wilkie told the Senate panel. “On any given day, about 13 to 14 percent of the force is medically unable to deploy. That comes out to be about 286,000 [service members].”
The official asked the panel to imagine Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, walking into his company on Christmas week and finding out that 14 percent of his workforce is unable to work. “He would no longer be the largest company in the world,” Wilkie said.
Command Sgt. Maj. John Troxell told the Times earlier this month that nearly 100,000 are non-deployable because of administrative reasons like not having all their immunizations or their medical exams.
Another 20,000 are not deployable due to pregnancy while the remaining service members are non-deployable because of short or long-term injuries. But Troxell said that very few of those injuries “are related to combat injuries. Or battle injuries. It’s related to everyday, doing their job, or during physical training that they were injured.”
“If you are going to serve and continue to want to serve, and if you want to make this a career, you’re going to have to learn that path of recovery and get back to being healthy. Because we need healthy, fit warriors to defend this nation,” Troxell added.
Wilkie admitted the military shares responsibility for reaching such high numbers of non-deployable personnel, as unit leaders often did not ensure those under their command received all required medical examinations and care.
“The other thing we’ve seen is that in the down years of recruiting for the military, we offered too many medical waivers,” the official said. “The medical conditions ... have followed them into the service as they progressed through their careers. We have to address that.”
Monday October 30th, 2017
World's tallest flag pole..
Wednesday October 4th, 2017
A Marine's letter to the NFL..
Monday September 18th, 2017
These suicide statistics may be of interest.
The Western U.S. and rural areas have the highest rates of suicides among military veterans, according to data released Friday by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
The findings examined veterans' suicides state-by-state, and determined New Mexico, Nevada, Utah and Montana represent the highest rate at 60 per 100,000 individuals – nearly double the national rate of 38.4.
Many veterans in those states must drive 70 miles or more to find the nearest VA medical center.
Regions in the United Sates outside the West, which had an overall suicide rate of 45.5, were all below the national rate.
Kentucky, West Virginia and Oklahoma also had high veteran suicide rates, which can be attributed to greater prescription drug use, particularly opioids. Veterans who received higher doses of opioid painkillers were twice as likely to die by suicide, compared to those who received minimal doses, according to a VA study conducted last year.
Gender also played a key role in the most recent VA report. Women veterans had a suicide rate 2.5 times greater than their civilian counterpart, with the risk 19 percent higher among male veterans compared to civilians.
Older veterans at risk. The majority of military suicides are among elderly veterans, with roughly 65 percent of cases among those 50 or older.
Rajeev Ramchand, an epidemiologist who studies suicide for the Rand Corp., pointed out the significance of the report, which indicated “no state is immune.” He added that social isolation, limited health care access, gun ownership and opioids were likely contributing factors in suicide among veterans.
“This requires closer investigation into why suicide rates by veteran status are higher, including the role that opiates play,” Ramchand told the Associated Press.
The VA’s latest report breaks down national figures released last year, which determined 20 veterans commit suicide each day, as the agency looks for ways to increase suicide prevention efforts.
“These findings are deeply concerning, which is why I made suicide prevention my top clinical priority,” said VA Secretary David Shulkin, reported AP. “This is a national public health issue.”
More care sought
The report’s release follows a recent upswing in veterans seeking medical care upon returning from missions in the Middle East, and may impact the Trump administration’s push for expanding private-sector care.
“Veterans often have more complex injuries,” Allison Jaslow, executive director of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, told AP. She also noted the challenges civilian doctors might face when trying to determine a proper diagnosis without understanding the unique situation of veterans.
Improving the care of the nation’s veterans remains a priority for President Donald Trump, who in a statement this week said the U.S. “must do more” to help veterans struggling with mental issues.
Thursday September 14th, 2017
Some Brutally Honest Truths about the DACA Fiasco
Let’s make some things perfectly clear here about this DACA business…
1.) The children of illegal aliens are in our country illegally and facing possible deportation because of the actions of their parents. Not Donald Trump. Not Congress. Not Republicans. Not conservatives. Not me. Their PARENTS.
2.) The ONLY reason President Trump was put in the position of having to rescind the DACA policy is because Barack Obama issued it via an unconstitutional Executive Order rather than dealing with Congress and passing actual legislation.
To the extent that President Trump is “taking away” something, it’s only something these folks never should have had in the first place. Blame Obama, not Trump.
3.) Stop all this crud about DACA’s revocation “splitting up families.”
If anyone who entered this country illegally is deported, there is absolutely no reason why they can’t take their entire family back to their home country with them. There is absolutely no reason why any of these potentially affected families should be split up.
Look, I understand fully why people who have entered our country illegally and brought their minor children with them want to stay. But there is no “right” to come to our country illegally and stay. And to the extent their children suffer, again, it’s because of a decision they made, not anyone else.
Accept a little responsibility here, OK?
4.) While the plight of children brought to the United States illegally by their parents certainly generates an understandable level of sympathy, all these belligerent protests and angry public statements DEMANDING that they be allowed to stay as if nothing wrong has been done is, frankly, insulting.
Sorry, DACA kids, but you shouldn’t be here. That may not be your fault, but it is the reality.
Secondly, maybe under certain circumstances we should allow you to stay. But since you’re in the wrong on this, maybe you should ASK for consideration instead of demanding it as if you are somehow entitled to something.
You’re not “entitled” to anything from a legal standpoint. You’re not a citizen of our country. And, by the way, you’re not entitled to BECOME a citizen.
Show a little humility. A little gratitude. A little contrition. A little understanding for exactly how big a problem you have caused our county, even if done unintentionally through no fault of your own.
Get out of our face. Stop falsely accusing us of “racism” and hating Hispanics. And stop demanding citizenship even though you and/or your parents butted in line and broke the law to get here.
As Michael Corleone so famously put it to Carlo Rizzi in The Godfather, “I want you to stay, you understand? Only don't tell me that you're innocent. Because it insults my intelligence and it makes me very angry.”
You’re in the wrong whether it’s your fault or your parents’ fault. Start acting like it. Throw yourself on the mercy of the court of public opinion. Then maybe, just maybe, you’ll get a sympathetic jury.
Tuesday August 1st, 2017
This will save your life!!! PAY ATTENTION ! ! !
Saturday May 13th, 2017
Sunday March 5th, 2017
I would like to take this opportunity introduce Northeastern California's newest Ride Captain - Blake "Burnout" Hutchinson. Blake has been one of my "go to" guys here in Susanville since we started. After attending many Missions, Blake stepped up as Mission Photographer working under our good friend Ray Nadeau and has held that position for the past several years, doing a great job in photographing and videoing our Missions here in Northeastern California and making them available to the families of our fallen Veterans.
During the past several years, Blake has stepped up once again into the position of Assistant Ride Captain in my absence while I participated with Veterans from across the Nation in the cross country ride, "Run For The Wall". Blake has come to me once again, requesting to do more for this wonderful organization and family we call the Patriot Guard Riders. As of the first of this month, with the concurrence with the Northern California Assistant State Captain in Redding and the California State Captain in Sacramento - Blake "Burnout" Hutchinson will now step up to the position of Ride Captain here in Northeastern California, Susanville Area.
I encourage everyone to take a moment to congratulate and welcome Blake in his new position.
We have gained a great asset within our group with the addition of Blake as Ride Captain. Congratulations Blake!
Rick "Taildragger" Schultz
Patriot Guard Riders
Ride Captain - Susanville, CA
< = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = >
From your new Ride Captain;
It is an honor and priveledge to have this oportunity as Ride Captain for Susanville and Northeastern CA. I would like to thank Rick “Taildragger” for his mentoring and help during the past several years I have been with the PGR. Thank you to everyone else also, RC’s, ARC’s and PGR members that have helped me also.
It is truly an honor to know you all. For all you have done, are now doing and will do for our Veteran’s… I thank you!
Please... All remember...
"It's about the Veteran and their family"
NOT about Personalities,
Clubs or Bike Models . . .
Blake “Burnout” Hutchinson
Susanville, CA 96130 email@example.com
Sunday December 18th, 2016
As usual, it's been a while since my last entry here. This 2016 year has gone by fast. For myself, I am finally retiring the end of this December 2016 year. No worries, I am and always will be a PGR. This website will continue also.
I am happy that I will be able to devote more of my time towards the PGR. I am planning on staying in Susanville, CA for a while in to 2017. Whether I decide to move somewhere else, only time will tell.
To everyone that I know, especially all of my PGR Brother's and Sister's, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and I thank you for who you are!
Saturday September 3rd, 2016
Monday May 30th, 2016
Wednesday December 30th, 2015
There's no guidance or discipline in the home. The family situation is so unstable; 'Junior' doesn't even know where to send a Father's Day card. Junior gets dumped into the education system where he is socially promoted because the overwhelmed school district can't deal with the undisciplined whelp. Junior's major formative influences are 'gangsta' rap videos and a corresponding peer group of gangsta wannabes.
At age 18, Junior is turned loose on society carrying a bad attitude, a broken compass and no respect for authority. Junior gets himself in big trouble with the law because he is illiterate, unskilled, unemployable and his only source of income other than Government assistance is illegal and meets dire consequences. Then, the situation diagnosis is that the police need more training, compassion, sensitivity and understanding?
Pardon me for asking, but do you really believe this BOOLSHIT?
Saturday November 14th, 2015
JUST THE FACTS ! ! !
During the 3-1/2 years of World War II that started with the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor in December of 1941 and ended with the surrender of Germany and Japan in 1945, "We the People of the U.S.A." produced the following:
22 aircraft carriers
420 destroyer escorts
34 million tons of merchant ships
100,000 fighter aircraft
24,000 transport aircraft
58,000 training aircraft
257,000 artillery pieces
3,000,000 machine guns and
2,500,000 military trucks
We put 16.1 million men in uniform in the various armed services, invaded Africa, invaded Sicily and Italy, won the battle for the Atlantic, planned and executed D-Day, marched across the Pacific and Europe, developed the atomic bomb and, ultimately, conquered Japan and Germany.
It is worth noting that during the almost exact amount of time, the Obama Administration couldn't even build a web site that worked!!!
Friday November 13th, 2015
Well... Been an interesting past year on this planet..and in our country...what's left of it. Now that winter is fast approaching, I decided to make my own personal website with all my hobby stuff that I do to keep busy.
Check it out if you'd like too by clicking this pic:
Wednesday August 19th, 2015
Hello everyone again. I know... It's been quite a while since my last entry.
Not sure if anyone even reads these or not. I guess time will tell huh:-)
Friday February 27th, 2015
Hello Everyone! Here we go with another New Year!
Hopefully, a better one for All concerned:)
It's been almost a year since I last added anything to the "Commentary" section here on the website. Will try and get back to it better this coming year:)
I DID go and see the movie "American Sniper"
I did go and see it the weekend of January 16th. AWESOME!!! I am at a loss for words at this moment. More to follow. I recomend that EVERYONE go and see this movie!!! WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
In light of everything going on with Chris Kyle, his trial and family, I have created a special "Tribute to Chris Kyle" DVD. If anyone would like one, contact me.
Monday February 10th, 2014
Just recently, I went to the local movie house for the first time in probably 20 years. Went to see the movie "Lone Survivor". Normally, I usually wait until the movie comes out on DVD and then get it that way. This movie, I did not want to wait for it to come out on DVD whenever to see it. I do suggest that if you have not seen it yet . . . go see it! My opinions, feelings and comments about it all are below..
The movie, based on a true story they say, was a great movie and I have and always will support our Troops. My problem with the whole thing... The 3 Talaban Terrorist basterds that they saw in the woods and stopped, our Soldiers knew if they released them that they would turn them all in as to their location.
Supposedly, do to the United States rules of war engagement (which is a total bunch of boolshit as far as I'm concerned), they were not allowed to kill them, but had to let them go, which they knew and would in turn create their demise and ultimately, our Soldier's deaths, except for 1 that eventually barely made it out alive.
There never used to be this stupid dumbass "rules of engagement" thing for war. You and I all know that the Terrorists basterds, no matter what kind they are or represent, do not play by the rules. Why the hell should we?
No wonder we have so many dead and wounded Soldiers from the past decades of worthless stupid "Police Actions" wars as the Goverment calls them.
For strictly political reasons and their own personal gains, the crackerheads in Washington DC start these actions and expect our Fathers, Sons, Daughters, Brothers, Sisters, Wives and Mothers to fight their political boolshit with their lives. This has to be stopped!
If the crackerheads in Washington DC start something, let those basterds go fight it themselves and quit expecting us to do all their own personal gain dirty work with our lives. If they had to do that, I bet they'd all think twice before starting some other kind of boolshit on the planet.. (At least, I would hope so..)
Saturday February 2nd, 2014
"So with all the kindness I can muster, I give this one piece of advice to the next pop star who is asked to sing the National Anthem at ANY sporting (and that includes the Stupid-bowl) or other public event:
Save the vocal gymnastics and the physical gyrations for your concerts! Just sing this song the way you were taught to sing it in kindergarten - straight up, no styling! Sing it with the constant awareness that there are soldiers, sailors, airmen , and Marines watching you from bases and outposts all over the world! DON'T make them cringe with your self-centered ego gratification!
Sing it as if you are standing before a row of 86-year-old WWII vets wearing their Purple Hearts, Silver Stars and flag pins on their cardigans and you want them to be proud of you for honoring them and the country they love - not because you want them to think you are a superstar musician!
They could see that from your costume, makeup and your entourage! Sing 'The Star Spangled Banner' with the courtesy and humility that tells the audience that it is about "AMERICA"... NOT YOU!
And please remember, not everything has to be sung as a Negro spiritual. We're getting a little weary of that also...
Francis Scott Key does NOT need any help from you!"