"THE FIRST FIVE"
THE HISTORY OF THE BUFFALO SOLDIERS MOTORCYCLE CLUB OF
The idea of establishing a Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club in Columbus, Georgia, was envisioned by First Sergeant (RET) Grady”HD”Snell Jr, while engaged in a conversation with Command Sergeant Major (RET) Robert Howard during a pit-stop en-route to Marianna, Florida. The two retired senior non-commission officers were riding their motorcycles to Florida to visit another army buddy by the of named Cleo Johnson.
Their dreams were to become members of the roughest, toughest, and most respected motorcycle club in the United States, and help them better the communities, without losing our military identity. After reviewing the a Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club's web-site, After countless hours of research, e-mails, and phone calls they formulated a shot range goal; their mission was to establish a face to face with a member of the National Association of Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club.
In late summer of 2005, Snell received a telegram from Rockingham, NC, which was the rally site for the 2005 National Bikers Round-Up. The message read: "National Buffalo Soldiers are scheduled to arrive Friday at dust dark." They loaded their horses down with re-enforced camping gear, preparing for a storm that had been forecasted for the Rockingham area.
After arriving in Rockingham, waiting out the storm, weakened, but not worried, the trip logged in over 800 miles to establish a face to face meeting with a Buffalo Soldier, which never happened. The two Buddies, had hope to meet up with then in Florida.
In May 2006, contact was with the Secretary of the Buffalo Soldiers of Augusta, GA, requesting detailed information on membership eligibility. Much coordination was conducted with the Augusta, Savannah, and the Mother Chapter in Atlanta. Two months later a letter of instructions was received from the Founder/President of Georgia's State Mother Chapter- LTC. (RET) Frank "Renegade" Styles. Snell and Howard loaded the horses again and headed south to Miami, Florida with hope to meet the Buffalo Soldiers of Atlanta, Georgia. Needless to say, after 1700 miles, they failed short and missed them once again.
In early September 2006, a linked-up was made with the Mother Chapter of Georgia in Warm Springs, GA. Snell rode in a "Get to know you ride" and four months and 2500 miles later, Snell became the first resident in Columbus, Muscogee County, GA, to earn and fly the National Buffalo Soldiers Probationary Colors. After earning his full membership status, riding another five months and 3000 additional miles with the Mother chapter in Atlanta, GA., Snell recruited his best friend Milton "G-Man" Garris as his first Prospect.
After Milton Garris' introduction to the new President of the Georgia's Mother Chapter, Willie "Chief ' Ervin, and other club members as his first "Prospect" at the next monthly meeting. Milton G-Man Garris goes on to met the standards and became known as a hard rider while earning the privilege to fly the National Buffalo Soldiers Colors 5500 miles later.
With two (2) full member and two (2) more to go in order to meet the National and State requirements before a club could submit a letter of intent for starting a chapter in Columbus, GA. Snell received a recommendation from Robert "Smoke" Howard recommending Charles Banks, Randy Bruce, and Royal Watkins as Prospect for the Buffalo Soldiers Columbus, GA club. Howard stated that they passed the interview and met the requirements by doing the "GET TO KNOW YOU RIDE."
These prospects made rides after rides with over nights as prescribed in the Club Bylaws; for example, " Run For The Cup"(NC), "Let's Dance" (SC), and the "Road March To Kansas" within 72 hours: Birmingham, AL, Clarksville, TN, St. Louis, MO, Kansas, MO, Kansas City, KS, Fort Leavenwo1th, KS; to include also the ride to "The Rodeo in New Orleans", which was an additional 800 miles. Over-all they had ridden over 4600 miles as Probationary Members and satisfied the standards and sacrifices to become Full Members with a positive attitude.
After receiving their Colors, they elected Snell to be the first President of the club. In addition they also selected officers for all other positions that needed to be filled. The selection results were: President - Grady "Eliminator-7 (HD)" Snell Jr.; Vice President - Milton "G-man" Garris; Secretary - Charles "Sir Charles" Banks; Treasurer - Randy "Li!Bro" Bruce; Sgt-At Arms - Royal "Chicken-Man" Watkins;
With all required officers in place according to the National/Chapter by-laws on September 12, 2009, after 3 long years, with other chapters of the South Eastern Frontier present, the Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club Of Columbus Georgia Chapter, was STOOD UP (Chapter Activation ) with a activation ceremony at the National Infantry Museum, Fort Benning, Georgia. The cermony concluded with a parade of motorcyclists consisting of Buffalo Soldiers, other local motorcycle clubs and riders, which was led by a police escort to up-town Columbus to attend the "Bikes on Broadway" charity event. The "First Five" members of the Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club of Columbus Georgia were greeted and congratulated by other motorcyclist of the community.
The foundation of the Columbus Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club was built on the principles of discipline, perseverance, and loyalty. These are the backbone core traits of the original 9th and 10th Calvary known as the "Buffalo Soldiers".
Discipline: One must be willing and able to obey rules, regulations, and stay the course.
Perseverance: "We Can, We Will" exist, no matter what the conditions.
Loyalty: We will always be "Ready and Fo1ward".
today, four of the first five members remains with the culb and are reconized by the National Buffalo Soldiers and Troopers Motorcycle Club as Co-Founders of the Columbus, Goergia Buffalo Soldiers Motorcycle Club.
According to history (1866-1944) and the Native Americans: "There's no rider or group of riders, tougher than, rougher than, and is respected more than the Buffalo Soldiers".
ONE CLUB! ONE PATCH! ONE MIND SET!