Excuse our dust. We're remodeling our website. It's sort of a process.
The work continues! (scroll down to see news clips and videos from our Ride!)
We always need and we are always very thankful for your generous donations!
The book (Yours, Very Sincerely and Respectfully) is in the hands of the printer, and we'll have copies in hand soon!
All proceeds from the sale of the book go to help Gold Star Families. (Everything we have for sale to help our cause is listed in the credit card page. Scroll to the bottom to find the book. If you choose to enter the dollar amount, please send us an email instructing us to send the book. The email is located on our contact page. Price includes shipping. )
For bulk orders, autograph signings, interview opportunities for podcasts, radio broadcast, TV, or newspaper, please send email inquiry to email@example.com
Let's see what Tom has to say about his son Nathan...
Helping veterans' families is why we get up every day.
For us, every day is Memorial Day.
We're saddling up to honor 100 families, and we'd love it if you could come along.
Next year's Ride is being created now. We'll hit all the lower 48,
and you're welcome to come along!
We're Riding with The Return next year, raising money for Gold Star Families and Camp NORA (No One Rides Alone). Details of this wonderful organization are in Yours, Very Sincerely and Respectfully or by clicking here.
When you give to us, we give to you!!
Thanks to a wonderful donation from a private corporation, you can enjoy a wonderful Caribbean beach vacation**when you make a donation!
Donate $3,000 and choose any* four consecutive days to get away to a wonderful beach property. You'll also get to ride*** a Harley through the mountains with a local English speaking guide, and choose one of many other excursions available on the beach! Call for details.
Donate $5,000 and choose any* seven days to getaway to a wonderful beach property. You'll also get to ride*** a Harley through the mountains with a local English speaking guide, and choose one of many other excursions available on the beach! You'll also get dinner at a fine dining restaurant!** Call for details.
Donate $7,500 and choose any* fourteen days to getaway to a wonderful beach property. You'll also get to ride*** a Harley through the mountains with a local English speaking guide, and choose one of many other excursions available on the beach! We'll throw in a very nice dinner at one of our favorite restaurants!** Call for details.
Donate $10,000 and choose any* THIRTY days to getaway to a wonderful beach property. You'll also get to ride*** a Harley through the mountains with a local English speaking guide, and choose one of many other excursions available on the beach! We'll throw in a very nice dinner at one of our favorite restaurants!**
A little small print for the above offers:
Airfare is not included with any of the above packages/vacations/rewards.. Ground transportation is included via taxi to and from the airport in Punta Cana and the condo. Ground transportation from any other airport is not included.
Days must be consecutive.
*Dates are always subject to availability and are booked on a first come, first served basis. Availability for your favorite dates can be determined by sending us an email or calling the Gold Star Ride Foundation offices, or calling.
**Various restaurants are available within a 10 minute walk of the condo on the beach or in the local community. Our concierge experts will help you choose your favorite dining experience. This restaurant experience is for up to four persons only.
***Harley motorcycle excursion comes with its own responsibilities. Motorcycles are provided (usually Harley Davidson Low Riders or similar). Helmets must be worn in Punta Cana, and are provided.Any or all other motorcycle riding gear is your own responsibility (gloves, boots, etc). You must be an experienced rider, and you must be able to demonstrate this prior to the ride. This excursion is for up to four people on two motorcycles. If your group needs more than that, please reach out to us and we will try to accommodate you.
The Gold Star Ride Foundation is anorganization that takes care of people with invisible wounds. We visit and pay tribute to families who grieve over the loss of a member who lost their life while serving in the United States Military. We give money to other organizations which do the same and similar work with veterans and their families, but mostly we give education benefits to surviving brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, sons, and daughters. This website is designed to explain that in detail.
WHAT DID YOU DO TODAY SOMEWHERE IN WYOMING
After twelve hours of riding in the heat, the rain, the mountains, the plains, and the cold; in bad traffic, all alone, and on slippery roads, I couldn’t stop thinking about the first twelve minutes of my day.
It started like any other: checking out of a motel after sleeping almost six hours. I talked a bit with the people working there, who shared stories of their father, grandfather, and uncles, all who had served in the military. Some from World War II, some from Korea, and some from Vietnam. I shared the story of Nathan, an adopted Korean who spent 14 years in the United States military, rising to Delta Force before taking a bullet to the throat. I made a small joke or two, because it’s so easy to allow these types of conversations to go dark and stay there. Then I said my goodbyes.
I started the bike and rode about 10 feet, when I heard someone calling out to me. I stopped the bike to listen to “Shorty” (a name she has grown to love) who asked if she could make a donation. She works at the hotel and had been in the conversation before I left.
“Of course,” I said.
“Can you wait here while I go to the ATM?” she asked.
“I have an app on my phone,” I explained, “I can take it right here.” I started preparing to accept her card, and she started telling her story.
“I was homeless with four kids,” she said, “and this old man came out of nowhere and helped me out. When I asked him why he did it, he said he served in World War II and as a Native American, taking care of the younger generation was his responsibility.”
“That’s a special memory,” I said, “but I can’t make your card work. It’s probably because my fat fingers punched in the wrong numbers. Why don’t you meet me at the coffee place you recommended to me since it’s right next to the ATM?”
“OK,” she said. I was half thinking I’d never see her again.
I stopped at the drive in coffee shop, parked the bike, grabbed a camera, and walked up to the drive up window. The three young women working there were very attentive as I explained the Gold Star Ride Foundation, and the families we visit. I asked them if they’d like me to record them and talk about their coffee shop in our upcoming documentary (we have more than five terabytes of video data for that documentary), and they said yes. They all signed the guest book. They were happy to help.
Then they handed me my cup: two shots of espresso, with nothing added.
“Four dollars,” she said.
“You mean you can’t donate a cup of coffee since I’m recording you for the documentary?” I asked, a little surprised.
“Nope,” she said, taking my card.
I turned to walk away a little in disbelief.
Before I could make it back to the bike, a car pulled up next to me, and Shorty got out of the passenger side. “Here,” she said, holding out a folded bill. “It wasn’t your fat fingers that were the problem,” she continued, “I didn’t have thirty dollars in the bank. But here’s twenty.”
My eyes began to moisten. “Thank you very much,” I said. I felt a lump in my throat.
“I’m just glad you do what you do,” she said.
I watched a long time as she got back in the car on the passenger side, because someone else drove her. She didn’t even have a car.
I saddled up and rode out of town, knowing I had three hundred miles to cover before the day was done.
I’ve been away from home nearly 50 days. I’ve ridden nearly 13,000 miles. I’ve visited with more than 60 Gold Star Families - all of whom didn’t know what to expect, and all of whom were very happy because I stopped - I’ve cried with them all. I’ve asked a lot of people for donations, and some people have made donations.
I’ll never forget the first twelve minutes of my day, August 16, 2018.
Gold Star Foundation roars into Amery
Jul 13, 2018
by April Ziemer
The Amery Family Restaurant hosted a group on July 2nd that was passing through town during the start of a 54-day journey. Tony Price, the executive director of The Gold Star Ride Foundation is leading the pack, which is on a mission to honor 100 Gold Star Families across the United States.
A Gold Star Family is any family who has lost someone who has served in our nation’s defense. This may include deaths during active duty, those who have lost a life due to PTSD, vets who have died from cancer after being exposed to chemicals during duty, and other circumstances.
Founded three years ago, the Gold Star Ride Foundation is a non-profit volunteer group started by a disabled veteran, who wanted to give back to families who face the daily pain of life without their fallen hero.
The foundation believes that the strongest, bravest, and most kind nation on the planet should take care of the families after a member of our fighting forces loses their life. Their goal is to honor and support these families while educating communities along the way about what a Gold Star Family is and the sacrifices they have made.
Gold Star Families who would like a visit have contacted the organization. According to the Gold Star Ride Foundation’s website, “They honor us by asking us to stop, and we honor them when we do.”
Stops have been planned and a route scheduled which started in Minnesota and circles around the entire United States. At any point, anyone who has a motorcycle is invited to join the Ride for as long as they are able and to visit the families that will be honored. Stops will be made to see the PBO Corporation in Clear Lake to view the Civil War artillery museum, the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial in New Jersey, and Arlington National Cemetery among other places. At times there are over one hundred motorcycles headed to a Gold Star Family home.
Price describes a visit saying, “The roar of engines can be heard for miles around. Power fills the air, bikes consume the streets and each Rider starts pulling up to the house. Slowly the seas of bikers approach the yard. Each family shares their story with the group. The group includes men and women who might be covered in tattoos, adorned in leather and sweaty bandanas, and may have cigarettes hanging from the edges of their mouths.”
To some, members of the pack may look scary, but these men and women conduct a short presentation introducing themselves and why they are there. They listen to the family’s story about the hero, and what his or her life was like. After a short celebration of that life, a plaque is presented along with any gifts that have been sent from sponsors and donors.
According to Price, “there is not a dry eye around, and it is a very powerful experience”.
Two students of Minneapolis Community and Technical College are filming a documentary about the journey. The students, Rico and Curtis, will spend their summer in a vehicle following the participants along the way. The two videographers will witness the riders’ tackle 24,000 miles throughout 49 states. Someone who participates on the entire journey can expect to go through 3 sets of tires, six oil changes and 5000 gallons of gas. Stops are intentionally made in small communities even though it might not always be the quickest route to their destination. Price explained that they feel it is important to eat, lodge, gas, service their bikes, and spend money in these towns because they know that “heroes come from small towns.”
Gold Star Foundation’s motto is, “we Ride because they died” and in the process of honoring the fallen by taken care of their families, they hope to give out 1 million dollars in education funds while out on their mission.
FROM CHAPTER NINE OF YOURS, VERY SINCERELY AND RESPECTFULLY
After forty-eight days of grueling Riding; heat, rain, wind, and extremely long hours every single day, I found myself rolling down the east side of a mountain in Colorado. A song kept running through my head:
Somewhere along a high road
The air began to turn cold
She said she missed her home
I headed on alone
Stood alone on a mountain top,
Starin' out at the great divide
I could go east, I could go west,
It was all up to me to decide
Just then I saw a young hawk flyin'
And my soul began to rise
And pretty soon
My heart was singin'
If you’ve ever been there, it’s one of the most remarkable scenes around the Rocky Mountains. You come down the hill, and the mountains just disappear. Nothing but flat fields of grain as you roll east from that line.
I knew the song was pretty cool running through my head – music has that sort of power. I also knew it was wrong. I didn’t have a choice, really, about going east or west. I was going east. Well, northeast. It may have been up to me to decide, but that decision was made a long time ago.
As I got close to sea level for the first time in two weeks, I turned north and enjoyed the summer Ride. It was wonderful here, but very lonely. I managed to Ride north into Montana and South Dakota. Part of me was thinking how close I was to home, and how I was excited to get there. Part of me was thinking it was a wonderful day to Ride in some remote locations. After Riding north into Montana, I turned east and rolled passed a sign that said;
NEXT GAS 72 MILES
and I knew I was in desolate places. I double checked the gas gage, which said I had plenty, and rolled that throttle on.
It’s difficult for widows and orphans (as Lincoln so elegantly put it), just like it’s difficult for sisters, brothers, mothers and fathers, and "step" siblings.
We’re all in this together. We know you are too busy, so we’re going for you. We’re going to see families all over the country.
The Gold Star Ride 2018 embarked on a national journey to visit these families, and help them understand that the rest of us are grateful. We are grateful beyond words, just like they are filled with sorrow beyond words.
Do something. Give a little. Sign up to Ride with us (next year). Send a card to be passed on to a family. Just Do Something.
In the United States, only 6.454% of the population has ever put their lives in harm's way to protect the other 93.556%. Sometimes, harm wins, and they come home in a box.
The Gold Star Ride Foundation is a motorcycle-riding organization that has been set up to pay tribute to these families, helping with tuition costs, and providing some emotional support.
The Gold Star Ride Foundation first major ride was The Gold Star Ride 2018. One rider traveled to 60+ families, thanking them for the sacrifice they have had to endure, supporting them emotionally, reminding them that their sacrifice is not forgotten, and providing a little financial help with education benefits.
One rider covered more than 17,000 miles, traveled through 44 states, and spent 58 days riding in wind, rain, cold, heat, high altitudes, smoke, and anything else mother nature has to offer, to remind these and all military families, that their sacrifice is not forgotten by the rest of America.
And to remind the rest of us that Gold Star Families exist. So many people don't know.
If you wish to join the ride:
In 2018, The Gold Star Ride:
If you know a family that would like a visit when we come to your state, please ask them to send us a confidential email. We will never use anyone's email for anything except to respond.
Paying tribute to families that paid a lot more
than we did, one doorbell at a time.