• A Thanksgiving motorcycle ride designed to build esprit de corps and focus on safety gathered more than 220 Soldiers and motorcyclists at historic Palm Circle on Fort Shafter, Hawaii, Nov. 15. Soldiers who participated relayed a strong message of motorcycle safety.

    Motorcycle Safety Ride

    A Thanksgiving motorcycle ride designed to build esprit de corps and focus on safety gathered more than 220 Soldiers and motorcyclists at historic Palm Circle on Fort Shafter, Hawaii, Nov. 15. Soldiers who participated relayed a strong message of...

  • Motorcyclist arrive at historic Palm Circle of Fort Shafter Nov. 15 for a Thanksgiving  motorcycle safety ride. More than 220 Soldiers and motorcyclist participated in the ride that sent a strong message about motorcycle safety.

    Motorcyclist arrive for safety ride

    Motorcyclist arrive at historic Palm Circle of Fort Shafter Nov. 15 for a Thanksgiving motorcycle safety ride. More than 220 Soldiers and motorcyclist participated in the ride that sent a strong message about motorcycle safety.

  • A Thanksgiving motorcycle ride designed to build esprit de corps and focus on safety gathered more than 220 Soldiers and motorcyclists at historic Palm Circle on Fort Shafter, Hawaii, Nov. 15. Motorcyclist started the safety ride in groups of 25.

    Motorcyclist start the safety ride

    A Thanksgiving motorcycle ride designed to build esprit de corps and focus on safety gathered more than 220 Soldiers and motorcyclists at historic Palm Circle on Fort Shafter, Hawaii, Nov. 15. Motorcyclist started the safety ride in groups of 25.

FORT SHAFTER, Hawaii -- A Thanksgiving motorcycle ride designed to build esprit de corps and focus on safety gathered more than 220 Soldiers and motorcyclists at historic Palm Circle on Fort Shafter, Hawaii, Nov. 15.

The ride started on Fort. Shafter and finished at a Veterans' Home in Kapolei. More than 220 participants, representing USARPAC units, departed Palm Circle in five-minute intervals. Prior to the ride, the bikers showed off their motorcycles and enjoyed the company of other bikers.

"It's like when you buy a motorcycle you're almost automatically inducted into the brotherhood, "said Sgt. 1st Class Nirettzy Schmidt-Velez, Alpha Company, Tripler Army Medical Center. "Regardless of what you ride, whether it's a street bike, dirt bike or whatever, you have a certain kind of camaraderie. As Soldiers, we have the same values because of our service, so when we come together like this to ride, we feel an even deeper camaraderie."

It's like when you buy a motorcycle, you're almost automatically inducted into a brotherhood," said Sgt. 1st Class Nirettzy Schmidt-Velez, Alpha Company, Tripler Army Medical Center. "Regardless of what you ride, whether it's a street bike, dirt bike or whatever, you have a certain kind of camaraderie. As Soldiers, we have the same values because of our service, so when we come together like this to ride, we feel an even deeper camaradie."

"Aside from the bonding and esprit de corps, Soldiers who participated relayed a strong message of motorcycle safety. Riding mentors checked participants' road wear, motorcycles and paperwork to ensure Soldiers were in compliance to ride safely. "The holidays are coming up and a lot of Soldiers will be going back to the mainland. What we are trying to promote here is safety, not only here in Hawaii, but also when the Soldiers return to the mainland and go on leave," said Command Sgt. Maj. Frank Leota, USARPAC's senior enlisted advisor.

Riders took off on an array of motorcycles, to include Harley Davidsons, sports bikes, old roadsters and dirt bikes.

"It's very important that we bring everyone together as a family for events like this," Leota said. "As you can see we have an array of riders. Some are novices, and some are like myself and have been riding for 30 years. It's good we share this. It's another sense of freedom. Being on two wheels is a wonderful thing."

Page last updated Mon November 19th, 2012 at 19:31