I’ve been meaning to write a newsletter since I rode back from the 110th party in Milwaukee on the most amazing motorcycle ever, the 2014 Limited. The 110th came shortly after we began our SDHD 20th anniversary, my 30th annual Memorial Day ride to the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C., and a wonderful ride to Sturgis; all of which followed my umpteenth ride to Daytona bike week riding with my son Danny. The last time I rode with Danny he was 11 and rode behind me to the Four Corners run in Durango, Colorado and he threw up almost all the way, (ugh!). Now Danny is 29 (OMG, big one coming up!), and he rode his own ride (a road glide) and it was awesome! Obviously none of the above inspired me enough to actually sit down and write, but it’s Veteran’s Day, 2013, I’m supposed to be in D.C. and circumstances, well you know…I wake up with the TV showing Arlington Cemetery and WWII Vets getting “Honor Flights” to their memorial and suddenly I get energized. I’m thinking of those fighting today in Iraq, Afghanistan, and places we don’t even know about. I’m thinking about the soldiers who’ve been killed, maimed, wounded and burnt, about those who fought in the Korean War and of course my fellow Vietnam warfighters.
My mind is full of images of everyone from my dad and his shipmates who I can still remember from my earliest years, to friends I lost at the world Trade Center on 9/11, and those who have died since. I think of Ty Woods and Glen Doherty, the former Navy Seals who were killed saving American lives in Benghazi on 9/11 2012 and I think of the sailors in the book ‘Honor and Betrayal’ about the Navy seals who were put on trial in 2009 for supposedly hitting a High Value terrorist they captured just because the terrorist claimed he was mistreated, (no kidding!); of course they were acquitted of all charges!
The question is how to prioritize everything. I’ve been fortunate to be able to combine my passion for Harley-Davidson motorcycles in a business and build it in a city as amazing as San Diego! It’s also been a blessing to be able to advocate for freedom against the tyranny of big government and for our Military past and present which is the real hope for America’s freedom in the future! We want to continue to be an oasis for club members, patch holders and HOGs, and I believe we will always stand up for issues we believe in from our role in saving the Cross at Mt. Soledad to helping start and raising money for the widows and orphans of the 37 Port Authority Police killed in 9/11/01, to the injustice at Bengahzi, Libya on 9/11/12, to honoring all of those who gave so much symbolized by CPL Ken Necochea Jr, killed in Afghanistan on December 12, 2010 whose picture hangs on our wall. His funeral was my first encounter with the Patriot Guard. The Patriot Guard is an American phenomenon and I am humbled and proud of every mile I’ve ridden with every man and woman who’ve ridden to honor the most honorable among us.
For over 20 years I’ve guided SDHD from a literal shed on Olive St. (Sports Arena Blvd.), to the doorstep of our new home at 4645 Morena Blvd. In that time I’ve been blessed to have had all the help and guidance of some of the most amazing and dedicated people in this industry. If I name them, I would undoubtedly leave someone out, but it’s also clear that over the last few years the torch has been ‘moving. Although I haven’t ‘passed the torch’ yet it is with great pride that I have been a participating witness (so to speak) in the evolution of the management and stewardship of SDHD, and as a father, and something of a mentor, I couldn’t be prouder.
My gratitude to you all is beyond my ability to describe it. Your loyalty as riders and friends goes beyond the customer label ,yet your choosing us to purchase your Harley, do your business with, and to trust us with your service needs, is what we depend on for our livelihood. We couldn’t do any of the things we love doing and we certainly wouldn’t have been able to have gotten to where we are and make the plans we are making without you. We will go forward with that in mind no matter what else we do and we will also be eternally grateful for the employees we have who show up, who care so much about what they do, who do it so well and who make us who we are. Thanks to each and every one of you!
We may not be able to change the world but we will sell Harley –Davidson motorcycles and everything that goes with them, service what we sell and serve our customers and community, and especially those who serve. It’s an honor to be in this military community, and it’s that connection that finally motivated me to write this. We look forward to seeing you in our Morena location for all your Harley-Davidson needs, for our USO event on December 7th, for the Tijuana Toy Run December 15th, the Blanket Run December 22nd, and for all the parties, events and your H.D. Motorcycle needs in the future.
Our Kearny Mesa location is still there with Reggie Burgers every Saturday, and all the comforts of the Harley home you’ve come to enjoy over the years. Ride safe, and please don’t wait for an invite to come in and let us know what you think, how we can do our job better… and of course if you can tell us how to change the world; we would love to know how to get the government out of our lives, more money in our pockets, make our allies feel good and our enemies feel scared, and make the whole world respect us….again! We’re taking it one day at a time and we’re excited about tomorrow. Come see us at 4645 Morena Blvd. and see why.