*RIDE REPORT*Posted for Feef

This year, the Kilo 3/7 VietNam Association chose to come to the Philadelphia area for their annual reunion of those who served in VietNam–and a few more who served in Iraq–under Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division. Several events were planned in the area for the Marine veterans, but today, October 4, 2008, they went to a memorial service aboard the USS New Jersey, an Iowa class battleship, and a Viet Nam veteran herself, which is now permanently docked in New Jersey, just over the river from Philadelphia. And the Warriors’ Watch Riders were asked to help get them there from their hotel in Plymouth Meeting.

For the Kilo 3/7 Marines, this was a somber event, a day to remember their fallen brethren. But to the WWR, it was more than that. It was a chance to give a hero’s welcome to 5 buses full of American warriors. And that we did.

Warriors’ Watch Riders came out in force. First there were 10, then 20, then over 30…and the counting lost it’s significance. We had some new faces joining the familiar ones, but they were soon embraced as part of the WWR family. And then came the Leathernecks MC. The number of bikes at the main rally point nearly doubled. We were ready to go say welcome home to our Kilo 3/7 vets. We arrived at the hotel, where the WWR set up a flagline to show honor to the service and sacrifice that was made to our country. The Leathernecks MC, some with relatives whose names would be called and a bell tolled and others who themselves served in a Kilo unit, met their Marine veteran brothers with handshakes, hugs, and eye contact of mutual understanding. And many of the Kilo 3/7 Marines walked down the flagline, with tear filled eyes, thanking us for being there, when we were there to thank them.

Once the buses were loaded, we headed to the ship with the help of the PA State Police. Trooper Gary Fedorczyk, a Marine veteran himself, led the Leathernecks, the 5 Kilo 3/7 buses and the WWR while Trooper Brendan Shearn assisted from the back. Once again, the WWR owes a debt of gratitude to the PSP for their help in ensuring the safety of everyone in our escort. “Thank you” just doesn’t seem like enough.

Once we arrived at the battleship, there was more opportunity for the Leathernecks and the WWR to let the Kilo 3/7 Marines know that they were never forgotten, and never will be. WWR walked amongst them to the ship, and again set a flagline at the pier. As the Kilo 3/7 Marines walked to the ship, flanked by flags on both sides, once again their eyes welled up, and we each felt that what we were doing for them today to show them how much they are appreciated was just as significant to them as what they came to do: remember their fallen.

Semper Fi!

They may have come from near and far, but when the Kilo 3/7 Marines return home, I think every one of them will know exactly why Philadelphia has been known for so long as “the city of brotherly love”.


It was an honor to be asked to RC this mission, and I am proud of how it went. But not because of anything I did, rather, because of how everyone worked together to make it happen. In spite of the risk of forgetting someone, I want to say:

Thank you to the Leathernecks MC for joining us in this mission. It was an honor to escort you to meet your fellow Marines, and a pleasure to have you lead them to Camden.

Thank you to each and every one of the WWR who came out today, both new and familiar, for just knowing what needed to be done and making it happen with the perfect combination of dignity and comaraderie.

Thank you Country Mike for being there to greet us at the ship, flag in hand, in spite of recent surgery.

Thank you Heidi (harleygirl) and Greg, for making your first WWR mission, and not hesitating for a moment when your emergency response skills were required to help one of the earlier visitors to the USS New Jersey.

Thank you Lengua for lining up the PSP escort.

Thank you Kel for your assistance with the Plymouth Meeting Mall.

Thank you Bobcat for every time you found a reason to ask me, “Did you…?”, because at least once, I hadn’t.

Thank you Trink for your back seat and making the day of a woman that preferred to go by bike than by bus.

Thank you Redbeard for all the phone calls you made in the last 2 days!

Thank you T for waking me up bright and early. Wait a minute…there wasn’t anything bright about it. The sun wasn’t even out of bed yet. (T types so loud it scares my dog.)

Thank you Wayne Lutz for having the vision and the passion to give life to this group, the dedication and perseverance to nurture its growth, and the confidence and faith to let it begin to breathe on its own.

And thank you to Jean and Joe McLenigan, who made it all possible with the effort put forth to organize this event. We were honored to be invited, and will be eternally grateful for having been a part of it.


see the wwr photo page for lots of pics by streetshooter