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Rolling Thunder & its mission

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Letter to the Editor
Friday, Aug. 23, 2013, 8:57 p.m.

In the July 30 edition of the Daily Courier (“Good eats for good causes”), it stated that “Rolling Thunder, a motorcycle group that includes veterans, served corn on the cob to the hungry crowd.” This statement indicates we are raising money for a “motorcycle group,” which is an inaccurate description of Rolling Thunder that will damage our reputation and hinder our ability to raise funds to assist disabled and needy veterans.

Rolling Thunder's bylaws state: “No chapter of Rolling Thunder shall ever add the letters ‘MC' to their Rolling Thunder back patch. This organization is not and never will be a motorcycle club or organization.”

Rolling Thunder is a national veterans organization in which many members are veterans; however, being a veteran is not a requirement for membership. We have many nonveteran members who support our mission and are willing to assist us in its accomplishment.

Many members do not ride motorcycles. The motorcycles are nothing more than instruments to gain public attention, allowing us to pursue our mission which is: “to publicize the POW-MIA issue — to educate the public that many American prisoners of war were left behind after all previous wars and to help correct the past and to protect future veterans from being left behind should they become prisoners of war — missing in action. We are also committed to helping American veterans from all wars.”

Rolling Thunder is a nonprofit organization. Members donate their time.

While we fight for POW-MIA accountability in the halls of Congress, Rolling Thunder assists disabled and needy veterans at every opportunity. Rolling Thunder Inc., Chapter 5 PA, raises money to purchase heating fuel, pay utility bills, buy groceries, provide transportation, etc., for disabled and needy veterans as well as purchase and pack more than 200 Christmas bags for veterans in nursing homes by selling corn at the Fayette County Fair.

Rolling Thunder is not a motorcycle group but a veterans organization, and 100 percent of the money earned at the Fayette County Fair is used to assist local disabled and needy American veterans.

Marlys Johnson


The writer is vice president of Rolling Thunder Inc., Chapter 5 PA.

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