A few weeks back, all of the STAR Chapters in the State of Ohio gathered at the state park in Mt. Gilead, OH, for the annual State Rally. Because I have ridden with several Ohio Chapters, it was a special time for me. Instead of simply hanging out with members of my Chapter, I was able to spend time with friends in other chapters. Riding a bike has really allowed me to travel around Ohio, meeting great people, and seeing parts of the state that others miss when they drive highways.
The State Rally allows the Ohio STAR Ambassadors to present Chapters and individuals with awards for their work throughout the year. In front of pretty much every member of every Chapter.
Not really paying attention to some of the awards; I was talking with the President of Chapter 300 about various topics, some riding, mostly personal, I heard my name being called over the PA system, along with three other members from my Chapter.
We were honored with the Good Samaritan award for helping a fallen rider on August 17. The award:
In addition, we were presented a rocker for our Chapter vests (one can never have too many patches):
It was hard to accept that I earned this award. All I could think was “anyone in the same position would have done the same thing.” But, funny thing, a very good friend told me that no, not everyone would have acted in the same manner under the same circumstances. I have give a lot of credit to some amazing people I know, whom I saw in action earlier this year, for demonstrating what people do in somewhat similar circumstances. I will never forget what they did, they are an inspiration to me.
This award is one that I hope I never earn again. However, I need to be better prepared for whatever may happen on the road.
When I got back from Mt. Gilead, I ordered a first aid kit to put in my saddle bags. That wasn’t enough – I’ll be taking a Red Cross First Aid class soon. Next up, a satellite phone – no matter what AT&T, Sprint, or Verizon might tell you, there are some very dead cell spots in Ohio, with some of the best motorcycle roads, and coverage is extremely important. You can’t hope for the kindness of strangers to make an emergency call.
A first aid kit, a sat phone, and more training. Always, more training – the most important item. Anything else?