Ride of the Brotherhood lays groundwork for 'The Return' to Vietnam: Lacombe Town Talk
By Carol Guillory
on September 26, 2013 at 8:00 AM, updated September 26, 2013 at 8:10 AM
Ed Lewis of Lacombe is working hard to ensure the success of the Ride of the Brotherhood's cross-country motorcycle ride, called "The Return." If his predictions come to fruition, the ride will bring thousands of riders to Louisiana.
Senator David Vitter recently presented a Congressional proclamation to Ed Lewis of Lacombe, showing his support for the Ride of The Brotherhood's 'The Return' to Vietnam.
The Ride of the Brotherhood is a group of Vietnam veterans trying to raise awareness for their cause. The group's objectives are to show support for other veterans and their families in need; assist homeless veterans; and sponsor major events every other year that both raise money and awareness to support the group's mission.
Lewis explained that the first quest is “The Return," in which 10 Vietnam combat veterans will ride motorcycles across the U.S. to California. From there they will be transported to Danang Vietnam where they then will ride their motorcycles on Highway 1, which was used by U.S. forces to transport troops and supplies to Ho Chi Minh City, formally known as Saigon. They will travel the Ho Chi Minh Highway, north to Hanoi, then back down to Danang before returning to the U.S. Once back in California, they will ride across country, joined by other Vietnam veterans along the way, en route to the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington D.C. After spending one night in D.C., the original group of 10, along with other Vietnam veterans who have joined the trip, will continue the ride to New Orleans.
This ride of a lifetime will be held in March 2015. March 8, 1965, is a significant date as that is when the first U.S. Combat Forces landed at China Beach, Vietnam, and then marched to Danang AFB to help American Military Advisers defend that area. It will be 50 years to the day when these 10 Vietnam combat veterans arrive at almost the exact location, in an effort to mark that unforgettable day in American military history.
Lewis said that considering there are more than 700,000 Vietnam veterans who deserve this recognition, approximately 80,000 motorcycles are expected to be riding in to New Orleans where they will be greeted with a welcome home celebration and concert. All veterans are invited to join the celebration, but Vietnam veterans will receive special recognition.
Lewis said that the goal of “The Return” is to hopefully offer closure to veterans, and information to their family members and friends. It also will pay respect to the military service of the Vietnam veterans.
This welcome home celebration will be the one thing that Vietnam veterans have longed for over so many years. Lewis said that they are working on securing a major venue for this event.
The entire project also will be filmed as a documentary, starting with the selection of the riders. Riders will be interviewed as they visit locations where they were served, recalling the events they experienced.
Funding for The Ride of The Brotherhood “The Return” will come from grants, sponsorships, and donations. In return, the money raised through “The Return,” will support veterans' organizations and related charities.
For more information call Ed Lewis at 504.234.0778 or email ReturnRide2Nam@yahoo.com.
Send all Lacombe news to Carol Guillory via email email@example.com or call 985.882.2573