Texas Cavaliers Mounted Platoon
Fostering Equestrian Ability

The Texas Mounted Platoon exists to foster the art and practice of equestrian ability within the ranks of the Texas Cavaliers. The Platoon serves as an honor guard to King Antonio during the Battle of Flowers parade in which many of the present 100 proud Platoon members participate. The Platoon is commanded by a Captain elected from the ranks of the Platoon members.

History

The Texas Cavaliers were originally formed to perpetuate the tradition of equestrian activity as a tradition of its then member’s forbearers. This was envisioned as an adjunct to staging pageants, parades, and other historic celebrations in order to preserve the art and practice of horsemanship among its members. Over time, the emphasis on the equestrian nature of the organization became less to the point that it no longer participated in the Battle of Flowers parade in a mounted fashion.

In an effort and desire to reinstate this tradition among the Cavaliers, 20 Cavalier members led an effort to reinstate the Mounted Platoon. Since the reconstitution of the Mounted Platoon in 1984, membership has grown to now more than 100 active members and in addition to riding in the Battle of Flowers parade, has other events in which the Platoon members partake.

Events

The three events occurring yearly as Platoon activities include participation in the Battle of Flowers Parade as the King’s honor guard, the annual Mounted Platoon Banquet, and the Jess Y. Womack Memorial Trail Ride. Recent years have seen the addition of a Spring Ride held at Ft. Sam Houston or Camp Bullis in cooperation with the military leaders as our sponsor. The annual Platoon banquet is held in May to honor the Captain who is completing his year of leadership and to provide fellowship for the members, their spouses, and honored guests of the Platoon. These banquets are held in various venues within the community or in the private homes of the membership according to the wishes of the outgoing Captain.

2014 Memorial Ride at Ft. Sam Houston with LTG Perry Wiggins

Jess Y. Womack II Memorial Trail Ride

The locations held for the trail rides since 2006 are listed. Jess Womack, an avid supporter, and recruiter for the Platoon had expressed the desire to have the Platoon travel to his ranch in Victoria for an extended riding experience. Regrettably, his premature and untimely death prevented this from occurring. To commemorate his enthusiasm and participation in the Platoon, those present at the 2009 Trail Ride suggested that the annual trail ride be named for him in memoriam.

JESS Y. WOMACK II BIOGRAPHY

Past Memorial Trail Rides
Year - Location

2006 - Briggs Ranch (Billy Freed), Highway 90W
2007 - Johnson Ranch, Highway 281N
2008 - Phil Bakke Ranch
2009 - Cordillera Ranch
2010 - Billy Freed Ranch, Dunlay
2011 - Strickler Ranch (rental)
2012 - Rancho Blanco
2013 - Fitch Ranch
2014 - Ft. Sam Houston
2015 - Ft. Sam Houston (Cancelled...RAIN)
2016 - Hansen Ranch
2017 - Steves Ranch, Boerne
2018 - Fall ride, Ft. Sam Houston
2019 - Phil Bakke Ranch

Spring Ride

As interest in the Platoon grew, there was a call for an additional event, so a spring ride was added when possible.

Past Spring Rides

2016 - Spring ride, Ft. Sam Houston
2019 - Spring ride, Camp Bullis

2008 Fall Ride

Miscellaneous Awards

Joe Elliott Award

This award was started in 2006 and is given to the member who best embodies the spirit of Joe Elliott who had famously quipped "There is no recreational value in a horse". The awardee is a member who supports the Platoon in every way except riding.

Joe Elliott Award recipients
(real or imagined)

Ty Griesenbeck
Guy Bob Buschman
Rob Eversberg
Joe Taylor

BonecrusherAward

Also started in 2006, The Bonecrusher award is given to the Platoon member who had the "worst behaving" horse during the Battle of Flowers parade. In certain exceptional cases, it has been awarded for "exceptional" Trail Ride incidents with subsequent medical attention required.

Bonecrusher Award recipients
(real or imagined)

Erik Hanson
Miguel Dilly
Sean Gunn

Past Captains of the Mounted Platoon

Elected/Served  —  Captain

1984-85  —  David Calvert
1985-86  —  Richard Bennett
1986-87  —  John Bitter III
1987-88  —  Clyde J.B. Johnson III
1988-89  —  John T. Steen, Jr.
1989-90  —  Chesley I Swann II
1990-91  —  Edward G. Steves
1991-92  —  J. Dudley Snyder
1992-93  —  Monte Tomerlin
1993-94  —  Joseph C. Elliott
1994-95  —  Guy bob Buschman
1995-96  —  Mark M. Johnson
1996-97  —  J. Marvin Smith III
1997-98  —  Marshall T. Steves, Jr.
1998-99  —  Sam B. Steves II
1999-00  —  Mike Johnson
2000-01  —  Tres Basse
2001-02  —  Michael Block

2002-03  —  Joe Taylor
2003-04  —  Tom Thaddeus
2004-05  —  Ed Frnka
2005-06  —  Don Noble
2006-07  —  Phil Bakke
2007-08  —  Billy Freed
2008-09  —  Ty Greisenbeck
2009-10  —  Richard Sparr
2010-11  —  Hans White
2011-12  —  Bart Simpson
2012-13  —  Manny Quinones
2013-14  —  Chuck Cothren
2014-15  —  Sheldon Fitch
2015-16  —  Pre Ball
2016-17  —  Tony Serna
2017-18  —  Miguel Dilley
2018-19  —  Dunn Armstrong
2019-20  —  Craig Browning

Camp Stewart Horses

For greater than three decades now, Camp Stewart has been the much appreciated and reliable source of mounts for the Platoon to use during the Battle of Flowers parade. This participation on the part of Camp Stewart is an act of beneficence that has made the logistics of putting the Mounted Platoon on horseback each and every parade much less complicated than it was years ago. A number of the Cavalier families have been involved with Camp Stewart through the years but the beneficence and assistance of Camp Stewart is not to be underestimated. Camp Stewart does have a 501C3 in existence which offers a mechanism for the Cavilers to demonstrate corporate gratitude to Camp Stewart and could also serve for individuals to do the same. Camp Stewart’s efforts and reliability makes our participation in the parade feasible and enjoyable.