Motor Officers during America's 9/11 Ride

The Motor Officers did an excellent job during America's 9/11 Ride

The whole ride, all 445 miles, was police escorted. Not only did we have a protected lane, but for most all the 445 miles we had the whole highway blocked off. The divided highways were blocked for us in our direction of travel. A person could get spoiled ignoring traffic signals, disregarding toll booths, not needing to worry about merging traffic, etc. We had our own troop of Motor Officers from Departments over several states to take us from start to finish. As we passed through different cities and towns, the local Police, Sheriff, and Fire Departments would show up at intersections and side streets blocking traffic for us through their jurisdiction.

Saturday morning we were to meet at a particular pre determined parking lot at the Pentagon. A few of us trickling out of our hotel were wondering how to best get there. We could see the Pentagon across the freeway, but didn't know how to get to the exact lot where we should be gathering. So while pausing near the hotel trying to figure out where to go, we see about five motor officers leading a group of about 5-7 bikes, so we jump in line with them. And off we go feeling rather fortunate about being in a escorted group. After a couple blocks, the officers do a U-turn at a stop sign. I thought it cool that they know the shortcuts to best get around some of the one-way streets and restricted turn intersections in the area. So we tail right along with them, zigzagging and U-turning our way around the neighborhood to the other side of the freeway. As we do, the officers start leapfrogging along to stop traffic at the intersections to insure that we all make it through without getting split up because by now we are 15+ in number. When we come up on a Pentagon entrance, we swing into an empty parking - now we can really scoot along since there are no other vehicles impeding us. But then we come to a dead-end. So we all swing into a U-turn as we continue to follow along in a well formed and controlled parade wherever our fearless leaders take us. After weaving through the parking lot maze, we make our way back to a security booth where the lead officer asks the security guard for directions. (We had already passed by a couple booths without bother...we looked so official in our perfect form with our band of motor officers herding us along. Armed now not only with the ability to herd, but also with directions on where to herd us...our motor officers whisk us to the other side of the Pentagon where we join about 500+ other bikes starting to line up for the official ride. Watching the motor officers guide us through traffic, searching out the location to take us reminded me of watching a team of well trained herding dogs working a group of sheep...guiding them flawlessly...just not knowing where to take them.

Another example of the motor officers doing a great job was in New Jersey. As we stop for fuel, the official "Pumper Crew" start waving us in at designated gas stops. As that gas stop becomes too crowded, they wave us on to the next gas stop. As we got waved past the last official stop, we continue on to find our own fuel stop - I could see a Shell sign a few blocks down the road. We pull in with a few others ahead of us...and a lot more behind us. We swarm in and fill up the Shell parking lot and fueling pump lanes. When we pull out, we suddenly find ourselves in traffic and have to deal with the traffic lights. After getting through the first light on our own and on the way to the second we try to figure out just where the staging area is that everyone is gathering to regroup after come about three motor officers out of nowhere whipping into the intersection to stop traffic to let us through. As they leapfrogged ahead to guide us into the huge shopping center parking lot they even stopped traffic within the intersections of the parking lot. I had the sensation of belonging to a rogue group of sheep that had strayed and the herding dogs came looking for us. They then rounded us up and safely brought us back into the protected fold of the herd. The well trained herding dogs had once again done their job.

Thanks to all the Motor Officers that made sure we got from Somerset, PA to NYC as a complete group.

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