About 30 Patriot Guard raised their flags lining the drive to the Anoka Armory to show support to the unit and their families as they dropped off their loved ones. The buses arrived about 11, the bus drivers open the baggage compartments and the flurry of subdued green baggage was on the move in a blur of movement. It seemed to only take minutes to get everything loaded. Once the unit had loaded and settle on the busses for the first leg of their year long journey the flagline moved to Main Street where they reformed so the unit had a good sendoff.
The buses were escorted out of the armory by two Anoka police, one Anoka Co Sheriff, one Hennepin Co Sheriff, and the six PGR riders. There were two on the fly (freeway) LEO handoffs, we didn’t even slow for them. We reached the MN/WI border about 12:40 and our last LEO escort peeled off leaving us on our trek. I need to thank Anoka County Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Washington County Sheriffs, and Anoka Police for there awesome assistance and support on this deployment.
Our trek down 94 to Menominee went without any incidents, traffic was very considerate to our procession. Our team executed many flawless lane changes when ever we came up on slower traffic. One of the bus drivers said we must have had a lot of training doing escorts from how well everything went. About 1:25 we got to the handoff point where our next team was waiting. We thanked the bus drivers and visited with the unit as they took a short break.
One soldier ask if we got scared moving in and out of traffic like we did, I told him yes because that is what keeps us on our toes. He commented that we made it look easy. I don’t think so, however with the team I had I could see how it appeared to him as looking easy.
Thanks everyone that were there doing the flagline, Jerry, Jim (Big-Um), Geno, Dan (expendable), Joe E., Pat, and especially Mark and Kip, for their assistance in making a great mission.