Meet a Member | Family Motor Coach Association
Martha Barnes, who is retired from the John F. Kennedy Space Center, wants to stay at every U.S. Army Corps of Engineers RV park ... with her three pooches, of course.
FMCA membership number: F3291. I joined FMCA in the 1960s, took a break and rejoined in 1992.
My current motorhome: a 35-foot 2007 Fleetwood Terra LX
The best thing about my motorhome:
It’s just right for a solo driver. It has plenty of room for me and three dogs.
Other motorhomes I’ve owned:
My husband, Leroy, who travels separately, currently has a 19-foot 2007 Roadtrek. We’ve also owned an Open Road, two Coachmen and an Islander.
I decided to buy a motorhome because:
I like everything about a motorhome. I have had a tent, a mini-Toyota Class C, and a motorcycle with sidecar that towed a camping trailer.
I was chief of the administrative office with the John F. Kennedy Space Center (NASA) on Merritt Island, Fla. I started with the government as a clerk-typist and was fortunate to climb the ladder to management. I retired in 1995 after 37 years with the government.
I travel in our motorhome:
Approximately three months of the year. When I’m not motorhoming we’re: working part-time in the health industry.
My best motorhome trip:
Nova Scotia and the Grand Canyon. I have been to all but three U.S. states. My favorite trip was to Nova Scotia with the Challengers chapter of FMCA. I was gone for two months and could have stayed there a lot longer.
My favorite motorhoming memory:
My most memorable trip was to California and spots in between. I took my friends Willie and Lillian Combes with us and they had never been west of the Mississippi River.
My “dream” motorhome trip:
I want to go to every U.S. Army Corps of Engineers RV park in the USA.
My perfect day of motorhome travel:
To go 250 miles and stop for two days and tour the area.
My worst motorhoming experience:
When I was in Albuquerque, N.M., and the campground had an electrical problem. All of the RVs were “hot” and I could not get into our motorhome until an electrician arrived. That was a “shocker.”
My motorhoming pet peeve:
Because of the cost of fuel, I can’t stay out as long as we would like to. Someday I want to be a full-timer!
The best additions I’ve made to my motorhome:
A satellite antenna dome and a computer desk.
If I could change one thing about my motorhome, it would be:
Remove the carpet and put in tile.
Something about motorhoming that I know now but did NOT know when I started:
That it would be so much fun.
When driving a motorhome, the most important thing to remember is:
You are longer, heavier and can’t stop on a dime.
My advice for other motorhome owners:
Enjoy it while you can.
I love to travel with my friends, and everywhere I go I tour the countryside.
Cracker Barrel, Cracker Barrel. I should buy some stock in Cracker Barrel.
Something others would be surprised to know about me:
Since I travel alone, people are surprised to find out I am married. My husband, Leroy, has his own motorhome (Roadtrek) and we do not travel together. Leroy has asthma and that makes it hard to be with a lot of people. I'm the opposite -- I love being with a group. So, we are a rare two-motorhome family. We have been married for more than 55 years!
If I were awarded a shopping spree at the store of our choice, I’d choose: Wal-Mart
East Bank Campground, Chattachooche, Fla. (Army Corps of Engineers)
When motorhomers visit my state or hometown, they should be sure to see:
John F. Kennedy Space Center on Merritt Island. This is where the space shuttles and human space flights were launched. Also, the Air Force Space & Missile Museum at the adjoining Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
Items you always keep in our motorhome’s refrigerator while traveling:
Milk, ham, mayo, mustard, lettuce, tomatoes, eggs, bacon, cream cheese and medicine.
What’s the best motorhoming advice you’ve ever received:
Never put your name on the motorhome. While you are out roaming, a thief could find out where you live and burglarize your home.
My advice to new motorhomers:
Join an FMCA chapter and get involved with other motorhomers. You will learn so much from chapter members.
Behind my motorhome, I tow:
A 2009 Chevy Traverse or 2007 Chevy Equinox. My husband tows a Smart car. We both use Roadmaster tow bars.
Pets that travel with me:
Smokey, a Yorkie who weighs 3-1/2 pounds
Chacha, a long-haired Chihuahua who weighs 8 pounds
Terra, a 5-pound “Chorkie” -- Chacha is the mother and Smokey is the grandpa
Travel tips I’d like to share with other motorhome owners:
Don’t always trust the GPS. Remember to lock all bay doors. Don’t let anyone help you hook up your towed vehicle. You do it and it’s done right.
I joined FMCA because:
When I joined, FMCA was very small. I wanted to get with other motorhomers to learn more about motorhoming. And I also wanted to join a chapter.
FMCA chapters that I belong to:
The Challengers, since 1992. The first chapter I joined with the Roll'n Rebels.
I can remember all of the campgrounds I have ever been to. There is something about each of them to help me remember. I love to attend the FMCA rallies and always find some people I have met from other campouts. The friendships last forever. If you don’t belong to a chapter, please consider joining one. Get a chapter that is active and become active with the group.