Louis Stanley attended the Operation Home for the Holidays on Sunday in Bridge City. He was there to show support for soldiers currently serving in the military and to support veterans. Mr. Stanley is a Marine Corps veteran who spent two tours in Vietnam. He is currently a proud member of the Patriot Guard Riders. He is still serving his country by helping families.  
The Patriot Guard is a group of motorcycle riders that travel all around the nation to protect families of fallen soldiers from demonstrators, particularly at funerals. One small church group from the Midwest has demonstrated at a number of military funerals for young men and women who died in Iraq.
Mr. Stanley is a member of the Texas Patriot Guard.  They travel throughout Texas and into some parts of Louisiana to serve these families. By law, the protesters must stay 500 to 1000-feet from the funeral services. The Patriot Guard Riders  “shield the mourning family and their friends from interruptions created by any protestor or group of protestors.” They form a wall in front of the protestors with their bikes and American flags so that the family can pass in peace. They manage to do all of this “standing tall and silent.”  They do everything legally and in a non-violent way. 
“We stand for a good thing, and I enjoy doing it,” Stanley says of the Guard. “I was in the military; I went to Vietnam twice myself. I know what these guys are going through,” he says. “It is very rewarding to get to help the families.” 
The Guard’s website states, “to those of you who are serving and fighting for the freedom of others, at home and abroad, please know that we are backing you. We honor and support you with every mission we carry out, and we are praying for your safe return.”
To contact the Patriot Guard Riders to join or ask for their assistance, visit their website at www.patriotguard.org or contact the Penny Record at 735-7183. Membership is free.

About Charlotte Sipes