In the last 8 days, I have participated in 9 Patriot Guard Rider missions to honor the fallen in our armed forces:
Sunday, July 5: presented a plaque to the widow of a Ft. Bragg soldier whose funeral we participated in last month.
Monday, July 6: SGT Bittiker, NCNG, killed in Iraq, arrived in Onslow County. We escorted the hearse from the airport to the funeral home.
Tuesday, July 7: Flag line at the funeral home for the visitation for SGT Bittiker.
Wednesday, July 8: Funeral for SGT Bittiker--flag line at funeral home, escort to cemetery, flag line at interment.
Thursday, July 9: Funeral for SGT Kramer, NCNG, killed in Iraq, in Wilmington. Flag line at Church, escort to VA cemetery, flag line at interment. Driving rain for the entire time.
Friday, July 10--morning: SP4 Adams, NCNG killed in Iraq, casket arrives in Onslow County. We escort hearse from airport to funeral home.
afternoon: Memorial service for SGT Baldeosingh, NCNG killed in Iraq, in Morehead City. SGT Baldeosing will be buried in Arlington National Cemetary.
Saturday, July 10: Flag line during the visitation for SP4 Adams at the funeral home.
Saturday, July 11: Funeral for SP4 Adams. Flag line at Jacksonville High School, escort to veterans cemetary, flag line at interment. Extremely hot, but there was a breeze.
The four men (SGT Bittiker, SGT Kramer, SGT Baldeosingh, and SP4 Adams) were all members of the same National Guard unit and were riding in a humvee destroyed by an IED. They were all within one week of coming home.
I sincerely hope we never again have so many missions so close together.