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Tour Of Honor

Texas T

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So why is the Tour Of Honor in the LD section? Well, just because. While you can certainly do TOH rides in short stints, you can also do SaddleSores in each of the states to capture all seven locations within a 24 hour period.

These are actually referred to as an Extreme SaddleSore because of the locations that you have to get to within the 24 hours. When doing the trophy competition rides in AZ and NM I have have found that these rides take me 20-22 hours to complete as compared to a typical Interstate ride of 16-18 hours.

I'll be in Texas for this years competition as I've already trophied in AZ and NM in prior years.

The link to the TOH site is www.tourofhonor.com and you can read all the rules, see information about the 2018 rides (as well as look at prior year locations), and start getting ready for the Dec 1 registration opening.

So if you want an excuse to ride, and you want to honor our nation's Veterans and First Responders, this is the place for you.
 
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Congratulations to the both of you and to Brenda being able to accomplish this with her health challenges!

TEXAS (T)OUGH :clap:
 

Texas T

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Whatever you want to use them for. I got the idea from Rob Carlo who would leave small yellow rocks with 343 (the number of fire fighters killed in the towers on 9/11) at various memorials around the country. Other riders would come across the rocks and take a photo of them along with their TOH flag. For any that submitted their photo to the TOH site Rob would donate $5 to the Fisher House Foundation.

Personally, I give a lot of my chips to vets walking through my store wearing a Veteran hat. It gives me a chance to strike up a conversation and appreciate them for their service. When the Tour starts up again in April I plan to leave them at various memorials. Now, perhaps kids may take them but that's okay; someday they may think back on that and understand that what they did was wrong. When I was a kid in Japan and standing in a long line to get into a temple I removed a piece of paper wrapped around a tree branch because I was curious. It took a Japanese person speaking English to let me know that those were prayers being offered up and should not be removed. I learned something new.

Although the yellow chips were my idea, it was Glenn Copeland's idea to get blue and red ones made as well. Glenn is the Texas state sponsor and retired LE, and his father was an F-105 pilot who was shot down over North Vietnam.

You have the option of getting the original black chips, yellow, red, or blue, or nothing at all.

One thing I could envision is that popular sites like the Vietnam Memorial in Angel Fire, NM might start collecting and displaying the various chips they receive. Not all sites have care takers on site, but for those who do they appreciate receiving tokens from the riders.
 

Texas T

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Davis-Monthan used to have these jets in the early 70s and they had a very distinctive sound. It was always easy to tell when they were in the pattern.
 
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An aunt of mine lives in Tucson and I remember being thrilled to the sight and (relative quiet) sounds of the A-10 warthogs flying overhead . Those are amazing. The THUD was an old one I never saw . Actually saw a f22 early on at Randolph afb sticking it's head out side a hanger. Sorry for going on like this but USAF is pure awesome.
 

Texas T

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Sorry for going on like this but USAF is pure awesome.
Tucson was also a U-2 base for a long time. I grew up in the AF spending 8 years of my youth on Guam during Vietnam; exposed to lots of B-52s, and some B-47s in the earlier years, Phantoms on their way to/from VN, the first C-5 introduced into the AF, lots of C-130s, KC-135s, C-141s, C-124s (ol Shakey), KC-97s, the occasional Vulcan coming through with the RAF, and a very rare Blackbird visit. As a kid I would pedal my bike to the flight line when the klaxon would go off and watch the flight crews rush to their bombers, and back before the tail gunners were moved up front I would get a wig-wag from the quad 50s in response to my waves. Nothing better for a young military kid at the time.

The next time you get out this way, take 85 south from Gila Bend to Why. That road cuts through the Barry Goldwater range and it is the turn-around point for the Warthogs doing their practice strafing runs on the range. They will pivot right over your head.
 
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Someone could almost start making tours of that graveyard to the public out there if there is not already one.
 
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Whatever you want to use them for. I got the idea from Rob Carlo who would leave small yellow rocks with 343 (the number of fire fighters killed in the towers on 9/11) at various memorials around the country. Other riders would come across the rocks and take a photo of them along with their TOH flag. For any that submitted their photo to the TOH site Rob would donate $5 to the Fisher House Foundation.

Personally, I give a lot of my chips to vets walking through my store wearing a Veteran hat. It gives me a chance to strike up a conversation and appreciate them for their service. When the Tour starts up again in April I plan to leave them at various memorials. Now, perhaps kids may take them but that's okay; someday they may think back on that and understand that what they did was wrong. When I was a kid in Japan and standing in a long line to get into a temple I removed a piece of paper wrapped around a tree branch because I was curious. It took a Japanese person speaking English to let me know that those were prayers being offered up and should not be removed. I learned something new.

Although the yellow chips were my idea, it was Glenn Copeland's idea to get blue and red ones made as well. Glenn is the Texas state sponsor and retired LE, and his father was an F-105 pilot who was shot down over North Vietnam.
.
Brian, These new "Rider #" poker chips are going to force me into rethinking what number I pick each year and go to a permanent number.
 

Texas T

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Someone could almost start making tours of that graveyard to the public out there if there is not already one.
There have been tours available for decades, but last year the rules changed. It used to be you could just show up, buy a ticket for the next tour and hop on the bus. Now you have to reserve in advance so they can do a background check first... http://www.pimaair.org/tour-boneyard

There's also a Titan Missile Museum south of Tucson that you can tour as well. The deactivated missile is still in the silo and you can go down into the command center. A couple times of the year they have a multi-hour "all levels" tour that you can take. They post a number of videos on their FB page explaining lots of stuff that you don't get to see on the regular tours: https://www.facebook.com/The-Titan-Missile-Museum-225757590289/

As a kid being driven to Kindergarten on base I can remember my mom having to stop just inside the main gate so that they could tow aircraft from the flight line to the bone yard.
 

Texas T

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Brian, These new "Rider #" poker chips are going to force me into rethinking what number I pick each year and go to a permanent number.
Glenn, I use my dad's bomber sqdn number from his Korea days.

For those reading this, Glenn is the person that I mentioned above.

silk scarf.jpg
 
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