One Veteran Group Offended By Motorcycle Leading Parade


This photo from a 2008 Veterans Day Parade in California shows motorcycles leading.

Post and Courier reported that a group of Veterans dropped out of the Charleston SC Veterans Day Parade on Sunday because the procession was led by motorcycles instead of the military honor guard.

In the report,  a former Army sergeant  said he doesn’t think the motorcycles are “dignified” enough.

“I don’t think that’s the image we want,” said Stephen Riggs of West Ashley, a former Army sergeant who had planned to drive a 1942 Ford Army Jeep pulling a 37 mm antitank gun.

“Military uniforms should lead the Veterans Day parade,” he said Monday. “What is it we’re trying to show? Would I want my grandkids at that parade to see guys in leather and ponytails with flags waving off the back? It is a dignity issue.”

According to the report, motorcycles have led the parade for the past 3 years and organizers say the group provides a meal at the end so it’s natural they be given a head start.

According to parade organizers, the procession met the required protocol which dictates that an American flag lead the parade.

The flag was carried by Jim Shumard of Summerville, a retired Air Force colonel with the Charleston chapter of the Star Riders, who rode out front on his Yamaha Road Star.