1975 PCHS Graduate Participated in the 2017 “Run for the Wall” Event
We recently received a surprise telephone call from Tim Brown, a Pocahontas County native who graduated from Pocahontas County High School in 1975 and left West Virginia for a twenty year career in the Air force that same year. Tim now lives in Los Cruces, New Mexico where he works security at the White Sands Missile Range. Tim was excited to tell our listeners, especially his former classmates at PCHS, about his recent participation in the annual Memorial Day Run for the Wall. Tim talks about the organization behind the event.
“The ‘Run for the Wall’ was started in 1989 as an effort by James Gregory and Bill Evans” said Tim. “They were a couple of Vietnam Veterans who travelled across the heartland of America on Motorcycles, talking to local radio, TV, newspapers about the fact that we have thousands of men and women still unaccounted for from all of our wars. The need for this awareness continues today and we continue this tradition every May. We don’t give political speeches or stage demonstrations. Run for the Wall gets its message to the public by riding through the United States, we obey all traffic laws and treat all citizens with respect. Our goals are to guide the participants across America and to educate future generations as to the importance of accountability in wartime actions, emphasizing that no one should be left behind”
Tim explains that the event has an even deeper meaning.
“But the issue of public awareness is only part of the benefit of the Run for the Wall” explained Tim. “We also give Vietnam Veterans and all veterans the opportunity to get their welcome home and start their healing process. Everyone has fought, or have loved ones who have fought in a war, and each has their own issue from their experiences – the welcome home, the buddies lost, the ability to finally help young men and women or just trying to accept the coming home alive. Many who participate in Run for the Wall, whatever they’ve been missing can be found in the Run for the Wall family. They can finally start settling issues that have been put away for too long. What we do is we promote healing among all veterans and their families and friends and call for the accounting of all prisoners of war and those missing in action –POW and MIA; to honor the memory of those killed in action from all wars and to support our military personnel all over the world. We strive to maintain a safe, supportive and private atmosphere in which each participant can reflect and heal during their journey to the Vietnam Memorial in Washington D.C., and in the hope that each can return home to a new beginning.”
Tim shares with us how he got involved in run for the Wall.
“Run for the Wall started for me in two thousand and fifteen as the first Vice Commander of Post 10, Joe Quesenberry (American Legion)in Los Cruces, New Mexico where I first encountered Run for the Wall” said Tim. “I didn’t have a bike then, but I told them ‘I’ll run with you next year.’ In two thousand and sixteen was my what we call an ‘FNG’ year- or ‘fun new guy’ or ‘fun new girl’ year. I said, ‘what the heck, let me go ahead and go all the way.’ I rode from Los Cruces, New Mexico to Ontario, California, and from Ontario, California, I rode all across this great Nation all the way to Washington D.C., where I experienced some wonderful people and wonderful events. This year I volunteered as the staging team where we actually go ahead of the pack. We have 3 routes, a southern route, a central route and a midway route, I took the southern route. The central route is the original route, stops here in Lewisburg, West Virginia. It’s home town is Rainelle. I had the honor to have a “re-flame ceremony” in Mississippi at the State Veterans Cemetery, a very emotional event for me. The Run for the Wall is also an opportunity for me to come back home and visit and sharew this story with everyone.”
To learn more, go to www.RFTW.us. Tim Brown leaves us with this greeting.
“I just want to say hi to my friends and all my relatives here in Pocahontas County and to all my classmates of 1975-‘God be with you!”