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Discussion in 'Old's Cool' started by rtwdoug, Oct 16, 2009.
Terrific story, great personality.
Lady in White
My dad was a dispatch rider during WW2 leading up to D-Day. Still have his leather pudding bowl helmet in a place of honor in my living room. And, yeah, there were some pretty good stories involving night runs during blackout on wet cobblestone streets, etc. His favorite was the time he low sided his 45 and it somehow managed to bounce up and into a pub. Of course it was still running with the throttle set where he left it so it was careening around inside the pub "and tables and chairs and shit were going everywhere." Laughed his ass off every time he told it.
damn, that was before everywhere in the UK was covered by CCTV (for your safety, of course)
that woulda been awesome to see!
I've known lots of WWII vets and the vast majority of them didn't talk about it much. My dad included. He taught motorcycle mechanics at Ft. Knox most of the war, but spent the last six months in Europe. It was always my impression that they had seen and experienced a lot more than they wanted to remember, so they usually avoided the subject when they could.
davevv...I understand that. My dad spent two years in Viet Nam as a helicopter pilot and only in the last few years has he opened up about his experiences, for which I'm grateful. They would have been lost forever otherwise.
He had two Hueys go down on the same day. In the morning they were shot down and in the afternoon the engine just quit and they auto rotated in.
same with my dad - never spoke to me about his time in Vietnam until recently.
Oh, make no mistake, my dad had no stories to tell about any of his time once he landed on the European continent, but the family knew some of what he'd been through. When he was in his 60s, I asked him if he thought it was worth it. He said, "Yeah, if you'd seen those people in the camps, you'd know it was worth it." Shut me the hell up.
Hell of a generation.
The great thing is, years after he died, we found a box of letters in the attic he'd written to Mom and they chronicle his journey from England to Normandy to Berlin. I'd love to hop on a bike and use the letters as a guide to follow in his foot steps.
Sorry, Doug, hijack over.
no hijack, I enjoy hearing old bike stories. And if you have read any of my ride stories, you know I visit all the WW2 places I can.
I even found the remnants of the original Stalag Luft 3 near Zagan, Poland, the story from there is what the Great Escape is based on.
besides, the OT stuff on this thread is the best part.
All I do is dick around in my garage.
Started the JD today, gonna try to ride it tomorrow before I tear it apart.
I hate to tear apart a running bike.
But I know its gonna look badassed when I finish it!
Yeah, your pictures from where the Battle of the Bulge took place are what got me hooked on your threads, as my dad was in there. They're what got me thinking I need to go too.
Speaking of dickin around in the garage, I should have some pictures of an R90HD to share in a week or so.
one day I will restore my 42EL to military trim, then I want to do a WW2 tour thru europe. My friend in Ireland has a WW2 BMW R75, I told him he should let me chase him all the way to Berlin :)
My Cousin resided at Stalag Luft 3 for nearly 2 years after having his B-17 shot out from under him. I'd love to do a "WW2 History" tour of Europe.
Yeah my Dad was a WWII veteran as well. I find it interesting to look back at how everyone's fathers were pretty normal when I was growing up in the 50s - then think about the fact that most had been through that war less than 10 years before.
My Dad was captured at Bastogne in the Battle of the Bulge. Eventually loosened up over the years to talk about the march across Europe to where he was interned with all the remaining officers from Tito's army. IIRC it was Stalaft 16 if I got that right. Other interesting stories of life and death all around him. He NEVER watched an episode of Hogan's Heroes though.
On the old bike side though, he did buy a new Harley back around the mid or late 30s. Apparently he dropped it in some gravel up in north Alabama where he lived - and promptly sold it deciding motorcycles were not for him.
Agree with you. I love the stories, old and new, about bikes and trips and the great people you run into along the way. Being a noob wrench I also enjoy watching you and others dickin around in the garage. I learn a lot and am less intimidated when I dive into a project.
Keep up the great ride stories, and the great build threads.
Hey Doug, are you making it to the Eustis swap meet this Spring? I just saw a thread here where its expanding to 3 days.
Yes, on Eustis, well I usually set up at the new place but I don't like it as much.
I drove past merrit island today. Sorry i didn't call.
*edit* I just realized that I was at a gas station in Eustis when i replied to this.
Damn! Wish you had had a chance to call while going through here. Looking at the time you posted from Eustis, you probably would have been right on schedule to have stopped and have a big ole burger right off the grill here. I won't tell you how good they were, though.
one time Im glad I wasnt on a bike....
Im driving along on a 4 lane road, 60mph, its dark, & I have a truck & trailer fulla bikes & stuff.
I see a hairy blur out of the corner of my eye, then a series of huge BUMPS & the truck is all over the road.
I turn around at the next cut over the median & try to see what I hit. I didnt see anything, so I kept going. A few miles later I stopped at a store, & I notice the left front hubcap is gone, theres a clean spot down theside of the truck like I cleaned it with a broom, and a clump of black hair stuck in the rear rim.
So I go back, & search the median with my flashlight.
first I see this skidmark on the road
I stop & walk down the ditch. and this is what I find, a hog that had to go al least 200lb.
I stuck a triumph tank next to his head, so you could tell how big that sonofabitch was
all that bacon, gone to waste
The impact would have killed a chevy.
as Stuntman Mike says
'remember when I said this truck was death proof? Well, that wasn't a lie. This truck is 100% death proof. Only to get the benefit of it, honey, you REALLY need to be sitting in my seat'
You call yourself a Southerner and you don't eat road kill?
No shit. :eek1