Riding in the motorcade was an honor. I could not believe the turn out of citizens and emergency personnel to show support. On every single overpass were firetrucks with personnel on top of the rigs in full uniform saluting. The closer we got to EDH, the overpasses were more and more crowded with Prairie City and Scott Roads being the biggest.
Every so often, there would be a Sheriff Deputy, freeway patrol, tow truck, or CHP parked at a 45 degree angle on the shoulder of the freeway with the officer out of the vehicle saluting the motorcade.
Exiting the freeway at EDH Blvd I almost lost it; it's tough to ride with tears welling up. I could not believe the number of people that turned out with flags, signs, or red/white/blue anything. As we passed RH Middle School, the crowd was astronomical. The lane became so narrow it was difficult to ride through; the crowd was literally taking the entire street.
The toughest part for me was seeing grown men with tears in their eyes, women crying, full uniformed football teams on a knee with helmets off, cheerleading teams, bicycle teams, veterans....everyone in complete silence. I've ridden Toy Runs and parades, but this was...well...something else. Silence...just the bikes making noise. It was overwhelming...I'm still overwhelmed this morning.
Mr. and Mrs. Mote took the time to come and shake all of the motorcade members hands and thank us for our support before the plane landed and before the procession started.
I wish the Mote family the best during this difficult time....