Torches Across America (TAA) is a motorcycle ride for all riders who want to show their respect to everyone who lost their lives and to the family's who lost their loved ones on that sad morning of September 11, 2001. TAA takes nine days, starting on the West Coast (Sept 3rd). Ride the whole trip, just through your state or a few miles when it comes in your area. If you can not take time to ride on the ride, everyone is welcome to be with us at any of the stops we make going across the country.

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Location: Kimberling City, Missouri

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

There will be a 2012 Torches Across America 9/11 Memorial Motorcycle Ride

Hi Everyone,

Just wanted to let all of you know that there will be a 2012 Torches Across America 9/11 Memorial Motorcycle Ride.

Ed Ravak Commander of VFW Post 2901 in Cambridge, OH gave us an ok. I am waiting on the results of three meetings. I have been told things look good for those meetings also. The members of the VFW Post I have been talking to are very happy for what the riders are wanting to do. 

A few years ago I did this and I am going to do it again this year but in a different way. In 2007 I asked Roger Alons if one of the kids in Troy, IL, would want to draw a design that would be put on the TAA shirts, pins and patches for the 2007 ride. The design we used was from his daughter and it was a great looking design.

Well this year I am going to let anyone that wants to submit a design they think would represent the mission of this ride send it to me by June 1st 2012 and I will pick the one I like the best and use it for this years ride. 

The design needs to be about the mission of the ride. Have a purple heart somewhere in it for our wounded warriors and a gold star somewhere in it for our lost warriors that will never be forgotten. Torches Across America needs to be on the top. The year 2012 also needs to be on it. And on the bottom it should read “9/11 Memorial  Motorcycle Ride” and “In Memory Honor And Support”. Send the designs to Torches Across America, P.O. Box 531, Kimberling City, MO 65686.   

Again since Les is not able to work on the TAA web site I am trying to post all the information about the ride in several places on the web and here is a list of those places;

Gary’s Bolg, which is on the web site. All you have to do is go to the menu bar at the top of the page and click on Gary’s Blog.

In Google Groups, .  I would like to see more of you go there because I want to hear feed back from everybody and you can comment on any ones post.

Torches Across America, Facebook web site. I might be better at facebook when this ride is over. I only have a few friends on it because like I have said I do not know how to use face book.

I want to thank everyone again that is helping put this years TAA ride together. You are all super special people.

Also remember you can ride the whole ride, part of the ride or be with us the night were in your area to show honor to your areas Armed Forces Members and their families. Do not let the rain keep you away if were going to be in your area for the night just get in your car or truck and come on down.

I will never forget this email JD sent to me a few year ago when I asked riders to put a ride together in their area for our Armed Forces Members.

Hi Gary,
We woke up to about 3 inches of snow on the ground only to be topped by a few more as we were leaving so we trucked it. About 1500 people showed up and the rally was a huge success. We will keep you posted as there is another one planned for this weekend in my hometown (MT.Pleasant Pa).
J.D .

If you can not be with us on the ride put a ride together in your area during the week of 9/11.

Oh by the way help spread the word about the ride please and here are the dates for the ride;

Sept. 4th, Coronado, CA, to Kingman, AZ
Sept. 5th, Kingman, AZ, to Albuquerque NM.
Sept. 6th , Albuquerque, NM to Amarillo TX.
Sept. 7th , Amarillo, TX to Tulsa, OK.
Sept. 8th , Tulsa, OK to Troy, IL
Sept. 9th , Troy, IL to Cambridge, OH.
Sept. 10th , Cambridge, OH to Jersey City, NJ
Sept. 11th, Jersey City, NJ to Allentown, PA
Sept.12th, Allentown, PA to Shanksville, PA and spend the last night in Somerset, PA

On the morning of Sept. 4th I am going to start my morning at the famous Stardust Donut Shop, ,in Imperial Beach, CA, it is located right before you hit the Strand going into Coronado, CA. If the two brothers that own the Stardust Donut Shop hear about my  plans they will close down for sure that day and go fishing if I know them. So if you know the two brothers that own it please tell them to stay open because I am coming from half way across America and want to have one of their great tasting donuts.

Now if there closed no problem because Don Ponchos is right next door to Stardust Donut and people start their morning their as well.

Have a great day.
Gary Covert

Monday, February 20, 2012

TAA 2/20/2012 ride update

Hi Everyone,

I received a lot of help this week after I sent out an SOS about the ride. I want to give a very big thank you to Bruce Mathis and Tia Azlin, who is Southern Cruisers Rider Club, Oklahoma State Officer. Tia Azlin sent me this email;


I would like to offer the assistance of Southern Cruisers Riding Clubs as you cross Oklahoma. Bruce Mathis shared this email with me. He is a past State Officer for SCRC Oklahoma, and I am the current State Officer. We have chapters across the state and will be honored to help you in any way. We have SCRC Chapters across the nation and I am sure we can coordinate escort and assistance all the way if needed.

Please contact me for any assistance.


Tia Azlin
Oklahoma State Officer

For those of you that were on the first TAA ride in 2002 will remember Bruce Mathis and his wife for the escorted ride they gave us on the old Route 66 from American Legion Post 308 Tulsa, Ok, to Branson, MO.

I have asked TIA if she could get other SCRC State Officers to see if their Chapters in the cities we spend the night will ask the VFW Post if they will help bring everybody together. I have also told her I will let the Oklahoma SCRC go for it in Oklahoma because I am very proud to have the help from all of them. I want all the Armed Forces Members and their families in Oklahoma know when TAA comes through that the Oklahoma SCRC was the main force behind putting all this together for them because they all mean something special to each and every member of the SCRC.

Scott Rasco, Texas SCRC State Officer contacted me yesterday and asked me what I needed from the VFW and he would start working with the Amarillo, TX, SCRC Chapter.

The SCRC does not have a Chapter in every city we spend the night so I am working on the ones they do not cover.

I know from the VFW Posts I contacted everything has been positive and I am waiting to hear back from them after their monthly meeting.

I do not want to leave out Joe Sewell who has been the TAA Oklahoma State Coordinator for many years on this update. He emailed me right after I sent out the email saying there might be a 2012 TAA ride and said he would like to help and that he had a new job and as working a super amount of hours a week but would try to set up his vacation time for he could ride some with us. I emailed him back but have heard nothing from him since.

Torches Across America is put together by volunteers all across America and I am just one of those volunteers. If you go to most years posted about the TAA ride on the web and look at the menu bar at the top of the page you will see ‘Thank You” click on it and you will see all the volunteers that put the ride together for that year.

All I do is ask riders if they would like to ride with me to NYC during the week of 9/11 and the ride is for a very special mission. I also try to get us together with others in cities we spend time in as we cross who are a part of the mission.

So what I am trying to say here is the ride is put together by volunteers and I am very thankful and proud of all the volunteers and riders that make TAA possible because during the week of 9/11. You all help put a great big spot light on those who the mission of the ride is about. The spot light forms a warm spot you put into their hearts that stays with them forever. Sometimes those who the mission of the ride is about want to thank all the riders so much they volunteer to put something together for us in their city.

I thank all of you for your help and support of the ride mission..
Gary Covert

TAA 2/10/2012 ride update

  Hi Everyone,

I have been setting up new ways to communicate with everyone for this years ride and this new "" address is one those ways. I hope sending this email through Gmail Group Email will send all of them at one time because Yahoo Group Email would let not me.

I also set up a Google Groups web page called "Torches Across America 9/11 Memorial Ride" so everyone can see, correspond with others and comment on any post made by anyone.

Now here is the bad news the two organizations I asked if they could bring us together for the evening in the cities we spend night as we cross America with Armed Forces Member and their families that have come home from Iraq and with families who lost a loved one in Iraq or Afghanistan will not help me.

So at this time I have two choices. I could say there will not be a 2012 ride or I could ask the VFW members in the cities we spend the night if they will help. I hate to ask the VFW members because they have helped me so much in the past.

Other things I have to consider are there have been some home coming parades in cities now for Armed Forces Members coming back from Iraq and there are national motorcycle organizations that could put together a national home coming for them with the snap of a finger.

I will let you all decide what choice I should make but here is what you have to think about before deciding;

Will any of you help me set everything up with the VFW in your area that we will be spending the night in?

Will you be on the whole ride or part of the ride?

Will you help spread the word about the ride to other riders?

Here is the rough draft of the route:

I am going to take a different route from Coronado, CA to Kingman, AZ this year. I will be taking interstate 8 to Yuma, AZ then two lane roads north up through Lake Havasu then hit interstate 10 to Kingman.

We will be spending the night of Sept 10th in Jersey City New Jersey, and I have already made my reservations at the Holland Motor Inn their. I looked at discount Hotel Motel sights on the web and I was able to make my reservations cheaper by calling the Holland Motor Inn direct.

By spending the night in Jersey City riders can go into NYC for the evening. The morning of Sept. 11th we will start our morning at the Jersey City 9/11 Memorial service that is held looking over the Hudson River at where the World Trade Center once stood. Then we will ride to Liberty State Park to see the new 9/11 Memorial, see the Statue of Liberty and look across the Hudson River at NYC. A couple of the Hoboken M.C. road guards will escort us to their club house for we can park our bikes so we can take a taxi to the subway then ride the subway to the World Trade Center Station, Visit the World Trade Center 9/11 Memorial have lunch go back to the Hoboken M.C. club house by way of subway or ferry before 4pm to beat the rush hour traffic out of NYC. Freshen up at the club house then take off for Allentown, PA for the evening of Sept. 11th. You do have to have tickets ahead of time to visit the museum at the World Trade Center 9/11 Memorial sight.

Riders can ride their bikes into NYC if they would like to on Sept. 10th or 11th but I will be going in on the subway and out by ferry. The evening of Sept. 10th I will probably take the subway back because the ferry’s might have stopped working for the night by the time my wife and I come back.

On the morning of Sept, 12th we will ride to the new 9/11 Memorial in Shanksville, PA, visit the Flight 93 Memorial Chapel and spend the night in Somerset, PA

Sept. 4th, Coronado, CA, to Kingman, AZ
Sept. 5th, Kingman, AZ, to Albuquerque NM.
Sept. 6th , Albuquerque, NM to Amarillo TX.
Sept. 7th , Amarillo, TX to Tulsa, OK.
Sept. 8th , Tulsa, OK to Troy, IL
Sept. 9th , Troy, IL to Cambridge, OH.
Sept. 10th , Cambridge, OH to Jersey City, NJ
Sept. 11th, Jersey City, NJ to Allentown, PA
Sept.12th, Allentown, PA to Shanksville, PA

Here is the email address for the “Torches Across America 9/11 Memorial Ride” Google Group web page so you can send me comments go or bad about the ride .

Have a great weekend.
Gary Covert

Maybe a 2012 Torches Across America 9/11 Memorial Ride

Hi Everyone,

Hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas and are going to have a great New Years.

I am thinking about maybe doing another Torches Across America Ride this year.

The reason why is because of our troops coming home from Iraq. This coming 9-11 should be in honor of them because they and their families have made the most sacrifices of all Americans in America since 9-11.

I posted something today on the Torches Across America Facebook page to Suzanne Schneider saying, (this is the season to be giving and I was thinking about putting a TAA ride together for our military).

Well tonight I really do feel like putting it together because I just saw the World News (News Hour) on our local PBS station and they talked to four military personal that have been to Iraq and they said since they have been home not many Americans really care.

I know there are a lot of motorcycle riders in America that care and this coming 9-11 would be a great time to show them since 9-11 is why they were put in harms way and they and their families made to sacrifice so much.

This year if there is a ride it would start in Coronado, CA next to San Diego, CA on the 4TH of September.

At this time I do not know where the ride will end. It will be close to NYC on 9-11 and that is where I would need all the help I can get.

The hardest part of putting this ride together is ending it in NYC. It is a very small and super busy area for a large number of bikes to come into. And that is not even adding the trouble of the toll booths you have to go through. Also 9-11 is on a week day in 2012 and people will be working on that day. Liberty State Park in New Jersey would be a great place to end the ride and so would be attending the 9-11 Memorial Service in Jersey City, NJ. They are both right across the Hudson River from NYC.

Please let me know what you think about it. My wife said I could put this ride together if she could ride it on a Goldwing tike so I asked Les’s wife tonight if Les would let us use his for the ride and she said it would be possible but I have not talked to Les yet. Les has not been able to ride it since his stroke a couple of years ago.

My laptop crashed a couple of years ago and I lost all the TAA sign up email address and a few weeks ago my Yahoo email address book was hacked and I had no email addresses left in it. This weekend I was going through all my disk with TAA pictures and things on them to sort of clean my work room up and I came across a disk with TAA peoples address on it.

So if you receive this email and you do not want to be on TAA email list please let me know and I will take you off of it. I will do it without you having to cuss at me also, ok.

Have a great night.
Gary Covert