A Brief History of the Patriot Rider Song and of Motorcycle Milestones
The History behind the song:
(Chuck "Machine" Johnson)
While performing Patriot Guard Missions from Arizona to California, I could not help but notice how few people regularly attend. In a area of the Country like this (Los Angeles to San Diego), we were averaging only 10 to 20 bikes at best for each mission.
I started getting upset with the lack of attendance and seeming lack of concern and resolved to find a way to increase our participation. To get the word out.
After a few months of R/C'ing (Ride Captain) intense Memorial Missions, at the time we were averaging 50+ missions a month here in SoCal, I had to take a break. So, I got on the bike and headed to Washington State to visit my daughter. While in route coming home I heard the song; "When Johnny Comes Marching Home" on my bikes radio. I thought what a great song that is and it certainly applies....then I knew I had to redo the song. So, I began while riding to compose the lyrics for a new "Welcome Home" song.
As I rode, I realized that the Patriot Guard Riders don't do just Memorials, but also Welcome Homes, Departures, and special events. So, I knew I had to have two separate but related parts to the song. Thus, "Sonny" was born.
In the first part of the song, "Sonny" returns the triumphant hero to a fanfare. In the second part of the song, "Johnny" returns having been Killed In Action (KIA) and is greeted as appropriate in an almost dirge of music.
Then a friend of mine from the site: www.allpoetry.com, Mark Rickerby, pipes up and says he will "record" it? Hmm.. I thought, OK, a simple guitar rendition sung just between friends. I knew Mark was already a accomplished poet and book writer, but what I didn't know was he is a heck of a singer too! He then told me he knew a music composer, Rick Balentine, who he bet would love to compose the music for it. All I had to do was to rent a sound stage for them to do the actual composition in. So, time passed and Mark called one night to check on how the music should sound at certain stages, and how the lyrics were not just right.
On the spur of the moment, I rewrote the song again while listening to the original song on my computer. I was under intense pressure to get it right as they were working on it as I wrote.
The Patriot Guard performs its "accompaniments" in formations called; "Packages". Typically, there is (during Memorials) a "Missing Man Formation" at the head of the Package. This column (two by two) motorcycle formation has the Ride Captain (R/C) at the left front, a selected family or related military member on his right and a selected family member or related service member directly behind the R/C. To the right of this second in the column rider is a blank spot. This is where the "departed hero" rides.
In the song, the very last sentence is; "When Johnny Comes Riding Home". Reflecting his position and placement in the Missing Man Formation.
Directly behind the Missing Man Formation is the "coach" containing the remains of our "now riding" hero. Then the immediate family members and all the other motorcycles follow.
Thus the current lyric's were born. I hope you like them.
Many people claim to have traveled the world on a motorcycle, some claim they are the most traveled. We will attempt to provide you with links with these trip reports and you decide who really holds the record.
735,000 kilometers is equal to 456,707.8 miles
Honda GL1100 1980
10 years, 2 months and 19 days on the road.
We are proud to present a brief concept of what is, according to the World Guinness Records, "the longest journey ever made by man on a motorcycle."
Photojournalist, Emilio Scotto, circumnavigated the planet both clockwise and counter-clockwise, consecutively, traveling the equivalent distance to the moon and back. He visited approximately 279 countries and 28 territories in the process.
Emilio Scotto, known today as one of the most notorious travelers for humanity, rode his Honda Gold Wing, 1100 motorcycle, dubbed "Black Princess" on a non-stop journey around the world, twice!
After logging 735,000 kilometers in a ten-year period, Scotto made his mark on the pages of the Guinness Book of World Records! He holds the record as having made the longest journey around the world on a motorcycle.
Prior to Guinness fame, Scotto gained international recognition in 2000. He was listed as one of the "40 Greatest Explorers of Humanity."
If Scotto’s trusted companion could talk, the motorcycle he shared the journey with would certainly have some stories to tell. The original motor gave its life along with one spare motor, nine seats, 12 batteries and 86 tires. That’s not all by a long shot!
About 42,000 liters of gasoline and 700 liters of oil helped Scotto fill up 11 passports with 64 pages in each. That’s enough pages for an autobiographical book. Those passports share some interesting tidbits detailing Scotto’s journey.
Along with learning five languages, Scotto found himself imprisoned six times, arrested on suspicion of drug dealings and accused of being, both, a Russian and a Rwandan spy.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, Scotto was further accused of being an agent for Libyan leader, Colonel Gadhafi. In the midst of all these accusations, he encountered cannibals, contracted malaria and was shot at twice and nearly killed.
Yet, Scotto is still here to share his stories.
To date, Scotto’s record has not been challenged or surpassed.–El Viajero
Uno de los viajeros mas grande de la humanidad. Emilio dio 2 veces la vuelta al mundo en forma consecutiva, consiguiendo el record mundial del libro Guinness como "El viaje en motocicleta mas largo alrededor del mundo".
Emilio recorrió 735.000 Kms en 10 años con la "Princesa Negra", su moto Honda Gold Wing 1100
Ultimate Journey - 2 BMW's trip around the world - 101,322 Miles
The Worlds Most Traveled Motorcycle - Harley Davidson - 292 044.46 miles
Motorcycle Moments From Around The World - Ongoing Trip (40 countries so far)
Around The World Again
Rob and Dafne de Jong head for home in their sidecar after five years and 130,000 miles of globe-trottin' good times
Jeff Munn - Ongoing Trip Around the World - BMW
Twice Around The World - Ted Simon - 54,000 miles
GPS World Motorcycle Adventure - Ongoing Trip
Alone Around The World On A Motorcycle - Ongoing Trip