Saturday, March 24, 2018

~ 10th Annual JPM Ride ~

"When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe."
John Muir

His name is John Paul Magao.  

Today, this motorcycle memorial ride, is in his honor.  We remember.

Honestly, I never met him.  But sometimes life makes connections that we are scantly aware of the origin.  This is my third annual memorial ride in his honor.  I always leave feeling good about life, about myself, and about his passion.  That is good.

The purpose of this motorcycle ride is to raise money for the JPM Memorial Scholarship Foundation which is a nonprofit organization and public charity that raises funds for scholarship awards to local schools (Redwood High School and College of the Sequoias).

Sometimes things happen for a reason.  I was not aware that this memorial ride was happening until I got a quick email from my friend, Dennis late Friday night.  I’m not a morning person but I got up an hour early to be at the Harley-Davidson Motorcycle dealership off Highway 99 in Visalia by 9:30 am.  This Harley-Davidson dealership sponsors so many such fundraisers in our valley.  They are some of the ‘good guys’ helping bikers with a cause.

Words about safety by organizer James Wilfong

Our ride into the foothills near Dinuba, Orosi, and Woodlake is easy going.  The sight of snow in the Sierra mountains is comforting.  Our recent rains have dumped tons of snow in the high country of Sequoia National Park.  

I’m riding towards the end of the pack.  It is critical that safety is foremost on these rides.  We ride in a safe, staggered formation and wave to the many people who see us rolling down these country roads.  I love to see the expressions on their faces, especially the young kids who look at us like warriors coming to save the day.  That's how I feel.  I'm sure that John Paul could understand.  He would likely do the same without a second thought.

I normally don’t do this, but I want to thank ALL, and I mean ALL, of the sponsors who made this ride possible.  Rather than list them all, here is a picture on the back of the awesome t-shirt that we were given.  Thank you!  I'll wear it proudly.

Thank you sponsors for your support of this worthwhile cause

The lunch was delicious and plentiful.  I walked away with two raffle ticket prizes.  It was a fun day, rain-free and safe.

Thanks JPM for this moment in your honor.  I remember you, though we have never met.

Good friends, Robert and Dennis

Flags wave freely behind this Marine and biker

End of the ride at Plaza Park - "We remember you John Paul Magao"