Tag Archives: VETERANS


Post & Images by Jack McIntyre. Info provided by Mark Schultz.

It’s always Sunny in Philadelphia, right?  Well for this terrific parade it was. Being a former Marine, I was able to move in and about the parade talking with WWII Marine Vets. Wow, one Marine was at the Battle of Tarawa in 1943 and still in Asia for the Battle of Iwo Jima in 1945. Just incredible, today’s youngsters couldn’t even imagine what that must have been like. Continue reading THE 2018 PHILADELPHIA VETERANS DAY PARADE

Bates Footwear Prepares to Hit the Road as Part of the Veterans Charity Ride to Sturgis

12Rockford, MI – July 27, 2017The 2017 Veterans Charity Ride to Sturgis is kicking off, taking more than a dozen veterans on the ride of a lifetime halfway across the country from Los Angeles to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. Bates Footwear, the Official Footwear of the Ride, has equipped participants with their Freedom and Bomber motorcycle boots to accompany riders on their journey.13
The 9-day ride departs from Sun Valley, CA and takes veterans through some of the most beautiful parts of the country, with extensive riding through the many National Parks of Utah and over the Rocky Mountains. Along the way, riders will don their American-made Bates motorcycle boots as they make their way to the nation’s largest motorcycle rally.

14On Saturday, August 5th, the group will arrive in South Dakota and make a ceremonial grand entrance into the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. Participants will then enjoy all that the event has to offer, including an appearance on stage at the famous Buffalo Chip, riding in the Black Hills, and more.

The Ride to Sturgis is just one of the ways in which Veterans Charity Ride supports wounded and severely injured veterans from all branches of service. The non-profit organization uses motorcycle therapy and other life-changing programs to provide uplifting and healing experiences for these veterans, and Bates Footwear is proud to support their efforts.

15You can follow along with the Veterans Charity Ride to Sturgis on social media by following #veteransride and #batesvcr. Learn more about the Veterans Charity Ride at www.VeteransCharityRide.org.

Check out the American-made Bates Freedom and Bomber motorcycle boots that the veterans will be wearing at www.BatesFootwear.com, and follow Bates Footwear on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for the latest updates.

About Bates Footwear
Founded in 1885, Bates is one of the largest suppliers of footwear to the U.S. federal government and Department of Defense, providing men and women in uniform with everything from dress shoes to tactical boots. Built on a rich tradition of quality craftsmanship, Bates has applied the brand’s dedication to market-leading innovations to offer a new choice in motorcycle footwear. Learn more at www.batesfootwear.com.


Bob Hanson: A hero among heroes

As part of the Buffalo Chip’s annual celebration honoring our military service members, the Bob Hanson Distinguished Service Awards have been conferred.

These Awards honor courage, sacrifices and heroic patriotism.

Past recipients of this Veterans tribute award include Senator John McCain, Colonel Steve Ritchie, Bob Woodruff, Retired Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods and Former Navy SEAL Glen Doherty.

Sadly, the namesake of the Hanson Awards, Bob Hanson, passed away January 24th. A shining symbol of courage and perseverance, Hanson was on-site during the award ceremony doe the last several years, wearing his still-fitting World War II uniform, a fact he was quite proud of. READ MORE HERE: http://www.buffalochip.com/NEWS-INFO/News/Sturgis-Rider-News-Blog/ArtMID/2002/ArticleID/543/RIP-Ensuring-the-Legacy-of-Bob-Hanson

BobHanson1Born in Bison, S.D. on Oct. 3, 1918, he grew up on a homestead, where he worked to help his family make a living. He was called upon to serve his country in World War II in 1941 at age 23 as a member of the Army’s 15th Horse Cavalry at Ft. Riley, Kan. A crack shot on the shooting range, Hanson also attended three gunsmith schools while in the Army and was a competitive boxer.


While serving in combat in France in 1944, Hanson was traveling in an armored car that was hit by a 40mm incendiary shell. The car’s driver was killed, while Hanson and other passengers were badly injured. Germans caught Hanson and held him captive for more than four years.


When he was finally freed in 1945, Hanson immediately attended gunsmith school in Denver, Colo. He married and moved to Hulett, Wyo. before eventually returning to Perkins County to serve as deputy sheriff.

Hanson has spent many years in Perkins County, as a hunter, artist and blacksmith. Ranchers in the Bison area still relied on his skills till he became ill. Bob was taken to his final resting place at Black Hills National Cemetery on January 30th.
In some cases “hero “ seems too small a word. This is one of them.


God speed, Bob Hanson.

Cheesy goodness offers prospects for U.S. veterans

GrChTruck logo copyGrilled cheese: It’s one of America’s iconic comfort foods, the sort of thing that can take a person back to childhood in a heartbeat. The Grilled Cheese Truck (GCT), a Southern California staple among gourmet food trucks, rolled into Sturgis in 2014 and made an impact. Yes, their food is great but there’s another reason the GCT resonates with bikers: the company owners actively seek out veterans to own and operate them.

Started in Los Angeles in 2009, the GCT was quickly and warmly embraced locally, so company owners decided to expand. But not simply for commercial purposes. They chose to reach out to a community that was ripe for entrepreneurship: U.S. military veterans retuning to civilian life from Iraq, Afghanistan and other military service. The company has committed to making the first 100 franchise opportunities available to vets before taking it to the public at large.

“We believe the skill set developed by military training lends itself well to running this kind of business. Leadership under pressure, unconventional approach to the work day, a mission specific outlook,” said Interim CEO and Chairman Robbie Lee. “Engaging quickly with a career or project is what vets need to transition quickly. It’s not charity, it’s respectfully offering a hand up.”

The buy in for a GCT franchise is quite reasonable at under $100,000 – especially compared to big name fast food franchises, which can be 10 or even 20 times higher. And because the GCT has built its foundation on solid value and superior service, it’s important that GCT franchisees are a good fit. So candidates are thoroughly vetted to ensure success. If the company finds a veteran with passion and discipline who qualifies but is short on the initial buy in, they’ll even offer financing, so strong is the company’s desire to see good people succeed.

In a fortuitous turn, the GCT’s effort to recruit veteran owners came to the attention of General Wesley Clark.

“He heard about what we were doing and wanted to get involved,” said Lee. It’s been a great connection, too, not only due to the General’s high profile but thanks to General Clark’s son, Wes, Jr., as well. As a military veteran, Wes is also on board to assist the endeavor. So is Olympic Skier Bode Miller who was motivated by the possibility of seeing veterans prosper. “It’s a cool American kind of thing to do,” he said.

GCTs have been popular at NASCAR races, concerts and dozens of other venues but 2014 was the first time these trucks have appeared in Sturgis. As a longtime motorcycle rider himself, Lee thinks it’s a natural fit. “We’re encouraging everyone to give them (vets) a chance,” he said. “We really are that American entrepreneurial story.”

Watch for Grilled Cheese Trucks nationwide as the company expands. And give them a try; you’ll be glad you did.

GrilledCheeseTruck copy