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The Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association loves loud bikes, but does their work quietly

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Drasco, Arkansas — D.J’s Diner becomes a biker bar and a veterans club all at once every month. “Everybody turns and looks at us,” Daniel “D-Bo,” King said, the road captain for the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association Arkansas chapter 7-8. “We love it. The louder the pipes, the more we turn a lot of heads.”

It’s an exclusive club for a couple of reasons. “You have to have at least a 500 c.c. motorcycle and you’ve got to be a combat veteran,” Bill Morton said, who handles communications and social media for the chapter. “And you got to have your paperwork to prove it.”

Those two qualifications set this association apart from other veteran groups. “We like to ride motorcycles and we try to help vets. Our motto is vets helping vets,” chapter president Bill “Oscar” Bleecher said.

That’s the service side. Then there are the benefits of membership. “For a combat vet, there is a thrill to run your motorcycle with some guys with some brotherhood,” Morton said.

“Nobody even has to talk about [heir service. ‘Here’s what happened when I was in.'”

So the rides bring pleasure, but they also generate the money to help others. “If we come across a veteran that needs help, we’ll do everything we can to help them,” Bleecher said. “We did Christmas dinners for six people this past Christmas. Six families who got meals and gift cards.”

A biker beard looks a lot like Santa’s beard, but members keep that spirit going all year, by trading reindeer power for two-wheeled horsepower, with a simple credo.

“We’ve got a great bunch of guys and, you know, we like to ride motorcycles,” Bleecher said. “We go places do things and have a good time doing it.”

 

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