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Poem from "Chopper Kate" Johnson

July 2007

The Last Homecoming

Two by two, they roll in
at attention they ride
out of respect and revere
the call is always hard
but their mission is clear.
They'll do whatever it takes
the men and women of the Patriot Guard
riding down this street of heartaches

The sound of pipes thunder
like a gathering storm before a rain
the flag's wind snapped cadence a sad refrain.
This is no poker run, not just a country cruise.
They're leading the way home
for a soldier has paid the ultimate dues

A crowd has gathered
along the town's main street
clutching Kleenex and flags
in young and old calloused hands.
Whispers are hushed,
no one is seated as everyone stands.
"We raised him well , he was a good boy"
"I watched her blossom and grow, she was truly our joy"
it all seems surreal and beyond belief.
How can we not question God
when he brings us such grief?

The path to final rest is lined
in leather and denim by the yard.
The grieving family passes through
a tear eyed, grateful Patriot Guard.
We can never express the thanks we feel or the debt repay
it's a small thing we do for a hero such as you,
on this your last homecoming day.