Hundreds of Bikers Expected For Allied Memorial Remembrance Ride Set for June 25 from Benbrook and Kaufman to Terrell
TERRELL, TX – (June 8, 2016) – Motorcycle riders around the Metroplex will join bike riders from around the world on June 25 for the eighth annual Allied Memorial Remembrance Ride to honor fallen heroes from the allied forces from around the world. “One ride, worldwide: united in remembrance of our fallen heroes” is the theme of the rides.
The Texas contingent – as many as 150 strong – will ride from Benbrook and Kaufman to Terrell where a memorial service will be held at Oakland Memorial Park Cemetery. During World War II, British and Canadian pilots (plus a few Americans) earned their wings in Terrell at the No. l British Flying Training School. Twenty of the RAF cadets perished in training accidents and are buried at the cemetery.
The Sheriff Departments in Dallas and Kaufman Counties provide escort for riders coming in from Fort Worth and Dallas, led by George S. Sherman. The East Texas bikers, led by Chris Hamilton, join the North Texas group at the Tanger Outlet Mall on the edge of Terrell to unfurl giant 3×5’ flags from each participating country on the backs of the motorcycles. With the Terrell Police escort, they parade through Terrell to the No. 1 British Flying Training School Museum on the grounds of the Terrell Municipal Airport. After a brief stop, they continue to Oakland Cemetery for the memorial service.
During the memorial service, ride organizer George S. Sherman will explain the history of the school and the ride to honor veterans buried there. The service also includes prayers, remarks by a current RAF pilot, bagpipe hymns, lowering of the British flag to half-staff and the Last Post (the British equivalent of Taps). Pilots of Ercoupe planes, meeting at Terrell Municipal Airport for their annual convention, conclude the ceremony with a flyover. The bikers return to the airport for lunch with the Ercoupe pilots.
The initial rides were held in England and Benbrook on June 25, 2009, England’s Armed Forces Day. Through the years additional rides, also on June 25, were organized in Canada, South Africa, France, New Zealand, Italy, India and The Netherlands. In the United States, in addition to Texas, rides are scheduled in Oklahoma, Kansas, Iowa, Illinois, New Hampshire, New York, Maine, California, Arizona and North Carolina. All rides include ceremonies to honor veterans of any war at local cemeteries. Two of the Oklahoma rides – in Ponca City and Miami – also visit RAF memorials in their communities.
About the ride:
Two Brits and an American who shared membership in the Royal British Legion (Riders Branch), a UK charity that safeguards the welfare, interests and memory of those who are serving or who have served in the Armed Forces, organized the Allied Memorial Remembrance Ride in 2009 to honor fallen heroes.
The American, George S. Sherman, a 27 year Air Force veteran and Fort Worth resident, belonged to the Royal British Legion in honor of his grandfather who served in the British Army in World War II and his father, a veteran of Vietnam and member of the American Legion, a similar group. In America, the event is coordinated by members of the American Legion Riders and Allied Riders, a new group of veterans and those who support veterans groups.
About the No. 1 British Flying Training School Museum
The No. 1 British Flying Training School Museum was established in 1987 to house, collect and display memorabilia related to the operation of the flying school at the Terrell Municipal Airport during World War II. One of only six flight schools in the country set up by the U.S. military, instructors at the flying school taught more than 2,000 young English aviators to fly from 1941-1945. The Terrell community welcomed the young airman, offering home-cooked meals and transportation, forming life-long friendships and continuing to care for the graves of 20 cadets who died during training exercises.
About Terrell Municipal Airport
The Terrell Municipal Airport, located just off SH-34 between IH-20 and US Hwy 80, provides a full range of FBO services through Terrell Aviation. Corporate aviation, recreational flying, flight training and aerial inspection services make their home at the airport, which also welcomes transient general aviation and air taxi use. Located on the airport is the No. 1 British Flying Training School Museum that celebrates the World War II cooperation between the United States and Great Britain. For more information about the airport, visit www.terrellairport.com.