Ride Report posted for Spike

This mission was extra special as I was a member of the Antioch Legion Post with Bill for a few years.  There were times when I would come over to the hall & mop after an event.  Bill would walk in and sneak up on me saying “what the hell are you doing?!”  I’d respond – “mopping the floor”.  He asked me why and I replied “it’s sticky”…  He would then shake his head and head for the kitchen to make us a pot of coffee mumbling “damn Sailors”.  Bill was a very loving man.  He was also very Patriotic.  His service time was from 1943 – 1946.  He served in combat in the campaign of Normandy, campaign of Northern France, campaign of Rhineland and the campaign of Ardennes under General Patton.  He was wounded in combat and decorated with 3 Purple Hearts.  He also had a Silver Star, 4 Bronze Stars and various other distinguished medals.  While recovering from his wounds, the story goes, he played golf with

 Eisenhower.  Bill was a member of many distinguished groups in the Antioch area for many years.  One of which was the annual Legion picnic at Youngville Veterans Home.  Since there was no church or escort requested, we staged at the cemetary.  While waiting for Bill’s arrival, it was stormy and there was even a funnel cloud spotted in the Brentwood area, leading to a local tornado watch.  As you can imagine, the wind was blowing and it was raining.  We staged with 5 cages and roughly 8 bikes.  Two Patriot Sentinnel bikes arrived and two Rolling 9 ALR bikes showed up also.  When the coach arrived, we positioned ourselves in a flag line.  WWR was asked to carry Bill to his final resting place.  Earlier that day, I myself (Spike) had Navy Honor Detail in Antioch, so I was in my uniform.  Army Honor Detail arrived and I asked them if they needed any help with the playing of Taps.  Normally they would not allow this but since we knew each other they let me play Taps for Bill.  Now, let me back up a couple of steps…  When the coach arrived with Bill, the sun came out and the storm disappeared.  The Chaplain for the Rolling 9’s – Mike Geltz recited some prayers with family members and friends joining in for the eulogy.  His beautiful wife Betty sitting there very composed, blew kisses periodically toward Bill saying “I love you” (they were married 56 years).  Betty is quite a lady and remained strong throughout the services.  I myself will miss Bill greatly.  Farewell soldier and friend, farewell.