Saturday, June 25, 2011

Texas Fallen Heroes Memorial Ride And Cookoff

Honoring HFD Captain Grady Don Burke
June 25, 2011

We gathered early at the Cy-Fair Volunteer Fire Department where the ride organizers were serving pancakes and bacon. After enjoying the meal it was time to look at all of the bikes that were lined up for the ride. There was every kind of bike you can imagine. Many older bikes and a lot of trikes. 
This little Fire Truck was a remote control - it was too cute!
Jack and Jerry checking out the bikes

Jacks Bike ready for the ride

HFD Pipes And Drums

There was as short service and laying of a wreath at the firefighter memorial at the fire station

The Burke Family placed a wreath on the Fire Fighter Memorial at the fire station

HFD Honor Guard

When the firefighters rode in on their bikes and in the background I heard the bagpipe warming up, I was suddenly reminded of why were all really there, Houston Fire Department Captain Grady Don Burke. Captain Burke was the 59th Houston Firefighter to lose his life in the line of duty. He was trapped in a house when the roof collapsed and was unable to escape. Captain Burke was a Valor Award recipient, a husband and the father of three.
This ride was to support the Texas Line Of Duty Response Team. They support firefighters who are injured in the line of duty, or the families of firefighters who have been killed in the line of duty.
After the short ceremony started the ride. We rode through four counties, Harris, Fort Bend, Brazoria, and Galveston Counties. It was a police escorted ride which means we didn't have to stop along the way.  No red lights, no stop signs and no traffic. There were cars parked along the roadways and people standing on the side of the street while we went by. There was some very pretty scenery along the way since we took the back roads there.  

Jack at the start of the ride
The Lumberton County Fire Department escorted us the whole way

Me in the rearview - yes, Big Daddy is driving me!

I'm sure Buc-ees was thrilled to be overcome with about 500 bikes and about double that with bikers!

Flag wavers along the way

I love wonderful trees...

A VFW Post along the way
We saw some real bikers along the route

So many cemeteries, so little time!

When we arrived at the Galveston County Fairgrounds there were people there watching the bikes roll in.

The riders were served BBQ sandwiches and chips after getting to the fairgrounds.
There was a barbecue cook-off and fire festival at the Galveston County Fairgrounds in Hitchcock, Texas. I enjoyed looking at all of the fire equipment and of course the BBQ cook-off teams. Jerry and I have a friend who has a team, actually a team of two!  Luke makes wonderful ribs. His sauce is a bit sweet and spicy at the same time.

Luke with his award winning ribs

Fire Station 26's BBQ team in honor of Firefighter Damion Hobbs killed in the line of duty on April 12, 2009

HFD Pipes and Drums


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