An Inspirational Woman Rider – Kristin McAllister

Below is an article written by a American Woman Rider, Kristin McAllister, that is touching more lives than she will ever know by her determination and enthusiasm for riding despite being in a terrible accident. Thank you Kristin for sharing your story.

 

 

It’s amazing how one moment can change your life.  May 16th, 2010, I was riding my motorcycle on highway 33 in California, when an oncoming motorcycle crossed over the double yellow line on a curve and sideswiped me.  Somehow, I was able to get the bike to the shoulder without laying it down.  My lower leg had been nearly severed, my bones sticking out like pins in a pincushion, my ankle broken and all metatarsals in my foot crushed.  Initial physician recommendations were to remove the leg below the knee, but after many touch-and-go moments, the fantastic surgeons at Cedars Sinai were able to save it.  To make a long story short, it’s been a rough year of surgeries, physical therapy and recovery, but I was riding bitch within weeks (walker strapped to the bike) and on my own by October.  I ditched the wheelchair and walker and started walking without assistance again in January of 2011.

 

During this past year, while unable to ride, I found out about a great group, BACA (Bikers against Child Abuse).  I got involved, and have been riding with them since September of 2010.  I proudly wear the vest and look forward to becoming fully patched so that I can become even more involved protecting the kids.

 

Another great byproduct of being laid-up for so long is how I met and got to know good people like Mando and Melissa Hernandez through the local VFW and biker events.  Their daughter, Lauren is a shining star of energy, always sporting a big smile and great attitude. 

Last year, when the California City, California VFW put on their Memorial Day parade through town to the Veteran’s Cemetery, I was unable to attend because of my accident.  This year, I was determined to take part.  So, I was there, bright and early, sporting my BACA vest, ready to ride.  When Lauren approached me with that great big smile and shining eyes, asking me ever so politely, “Kristin, may I PLEASE ride on the back of your Harley Davidson?”  I happily took her on the parade.  The various riders had flags attached to their scoots, but mine offered no easy attachment choices.  So Lauren took a flag and proudly held it up for the entirety of the parade.  I think I had the best flag out there—certainly the best presentation!  It was a pleasure to be a part of the ride—honoring those that have died for our freedoms, and a pleasure to have such a great riding partner.  Thanks, Lauren, for making a special day even more special to me!

 

Congrats to 7 year old Lauren for becoming the first

 Honorary American Woman Rider!

 

 

Lauren’s mom, Melissa says that Lauren loves the flag and loves to ride! That is a true young American Woman Rider!

Here’s to many safe rides to everyone.

Tina – harleyskyangel@comcast.net

American Woman Riders

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/American-Woman-Riders/112117735473351

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Intel’s Tablet Equipped Motorcycle Finds Glass House

Intel’s embedded chopper now rests in a custom-designed display case in Chandler, Arizona

When Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper meet an untimely end on a deserted rural road in the classic 1960s film “Easy Rider,” one of their motorcycles is engulfed in flames as the camera pans skyward. It’s a good thing the Intel Chopper never met the same fate. Unlike the Harley Davidson Hydra-Glides in the film, this one never even saw the road.

It turns out the four motorcycles used in “Easy Rider” were former police bikes purchased at an auction for about $500 in the late ’60s. Having four bikes ensured backups so that shooting for the movie could continue in case one of them failed or was wrecked. One, the famous “Captain America” emblazoned with the American flag paint job, was demolished in the final scene, while the other three were stolen and likely sold off for parts before their significance in movie history was known.

In a bold but also somewhat offbeat move to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Intel’s embedded business in 2007, Intel built a custom-chopper that would make the original “Easy Rider” bikes look like kids’ stuff. After three decades of silicon innovation, the company wanted to celebrate by building a super-bike filled with all the latest innovations. It was sleek, flashy, filled with gadgets, and not very rider-friendly.

Read more @ Intel Newsroom

New Motorcycle Plate To Honor Veterans

BRATTLEBORO — The Vermont Legislature approved a bill during the 2011 session to create a special motorcycle license plate honoring the state’s veterans and active military service men and women.

Gov. Peter Shumlin, a first-term Democrat, signed the bill into law on Tuesday during a ceremony in Rutland.

The license measure, originally a House proposal, was added into a Senate bill later in the 2011 session. It allows the commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles to issue the special plates to veterans and members of the United States Armed Forces for use on motorcycles and similar vehicles.

According to the finalized legislation, the commissioner will determine the type and style of the plate, although there is a requirement that an American flag, or a military-related emblem shall appear on one side of the plate. At a minimum, emblems will be available to recognize recipients of the Purple Heart, Pearl Harbor survivors, former prisoners of war and disabled veterans.

The governor’s office reported the plate will feature an American flag similar to the existing U.S. Veteran recognition plate available for cars and trucks.

“Vermont’s troops deserve our support and recognition,” Shumlin said. “These license plates are one way we can honor our veterans who have served our state proudly in protecting our freedom.”

State Rep. Michael Hebert, a Vernon Republican and Marine veteran, said since there are roughly 20 different specialty plates already in Vermont, it was appropriate to honor veterans with a motorcycle plate as well.

“A lot of vets ride bikes, and I thought it was a good thing to do and I was really happy to sponsor that,” Hebert said. “From my experience being in the military in the 1960s, anything we can do to honor vets, I’m on top of. Being a vet from the 1960s was not always the most pleasant experience, so I really think we should do all we can for veterans, especially the guys who are volunteering now.”

While the legislation establishes a special plate for motorcycle operators, it also permits current Armed Forces members to obtain veteran recognition license plates. Vermont’s law previously required active members to separate from military service before they were eligible for the recognition plates.

Commander Richard Guthrie of Brattleboro’s American Legion Post No. 5 said there are a lot of veteran organizations throughout the state and country who do excellent charity work through motorcycle rides.

“We see the fire department plate, police department, the Blue Knights [a motorcycle club made up of current and retired law enforcement officers], and now we have a lot of veteran riders, too, that do tremendous work for American Legion foundations and so forth,” Guthrie said.

“So anything that brings out significant attention to veterans in front of you, it’s a good way to quietly give them thanks for their service,” he added. “Every little bit helps. Many of these veterans, especially in the later wars of Vietnam, Korea and Afghanistan and Iraq — the toll that it has taken on their mental life and their families, they need all the recognition they can get.”

Other veterans organizations worked for the passage of the legislation, including the Vietnam Veterans of America Rutland Chapter.

“The veterans in Vermont are proud of their service to this country. This is just another way of showing how proud we are of veterans, and how many of us there are,” said president Adrian Megrath of the Rutland chapter.

Shumlin signed the bill at the chapter’s office.

Vermont’s DMV said military personnel and veterans can apply for the new plates beginning July 1.

“We would not be accepting any applications until July 1, and there’s no additional fee for the veterans motorcycle plates,” said a DMV customer service representative. “They will just have to have their form signed by the Veterans Affairs, like they normally would for any other vehicle, like a car or a truck.”

The Office of Veterans Affairs said the plates are a great way to establish contact with veterans who have never applied for benefits, especially Vermont National Guard members now returning from deployment to Afghanistan.

“Within a month of their return, about 10 percent of those who deployed came to our office to get an Afghanistan Campaign Plate,” said Clayton Clark, director of Veterans Services, said in a statement. “This gives us an opportunity to both show our appreciation and talk to them about any assistance they may need.”

 

One Veteran Group Offended By Motorcycle Leading Parade

The

This photo from a 2008 Veterans Day Parade in California shows motorcycles leading.

Post and Courier reported that a group of Veterans dropped out of the Charleston SC Veterans Day Parade on Sunday because the procession was led by motorcycles instead of the military honor guard.

In the report,  a former Army sergeant  said he doesn’t think the motorcycles are “dignified” enough.

“I don’t think that’s the image we want,” said Stephen Riggs of West Ashley, a former Army sergeant who had planned to drive a 1942 Ford Army Jeep pulling a 37 mm antitank gun.

“Military uniforms should lead the Veterans Day parade,” he said Monday. “What is it we’re trying to show? Would I want my grandkids at that parade to see guys in leather and ponytails with flags waving off the back? It is a dignity issue.”

According to the report, motorcycles have led the parade for the past 3 years and organizers say the group provides a meal at the end so it’s natural they be given a head start.

According to parade organizers, the procession met the required protocol which dictates that an American flag lead the parade.

The flag was carried by Jim Shumard of Summerville, a retired Air Force colonel with the Charleston chapter of the Star Riders, who rode out front on his Yamaha Road Star.