Late last year, the Ladysmith chapter of the Veterans Motorcycle Club (MC) spent two nights delivering donations to local volunteers.
Each year, the Veterans MC raises money for the community through the Corporal Mike Starker Memorial Poker Run. Starker was a paramedic with the City of Calgary and was killed May 6, 2008, while serving in Afghanistan.
This year, the Ladysmith chapter of the Veterans MC held its sixth poker run in Ladysmith and donated $800 to the Ladysmith and District Marine Rescue Society and $700 to the Royal Canadian Legion Poppy Fund.
Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue coxswain Rob Hoban was very thankful for the donation.
He explained these funds will help them purchase EPIRB personal locator beacons for individual crew members.
“We consume equipment and we use things, so we’ll definitely put that money to good use, absolutely,” said Hoban.
The EPIRB is an emergency position-indicating radio beacon. When it is needed, an antenna deploys, and it sends out signals about who the person is and where they are that can be picked up by boats in the area in real time, explained Hoban.
“We want to equip every member of our crew with one of these on their vests,” he said. “That’s a critical piece of safety equipment.”
Bill McCasky, past president of the Ladysmith chapter, explained that the Ladysmith Veterans MC is made up of past serving and currently serving members of the Canadian Armed Forces. The motorcycle club has been around for eight years and has been in Ladysmith for six years now.
“Basically, it’s almost like a support club in a way,” explained McCasky. “We help each other through things, and it’s comradeship. It’s something we’ve been looking for since we were in the Armed Forces. I imagine you people find that too, that tightness that brings you all together — that’s what brings you here. And that’s why we are here too.”
Along with the marine rescue society and the Legion, the Veterans MC also donated funds to the Ladysmith Resources Centre Association this year.
“We do what we can,” said McCasky. “We’re not a huge group here, but we do what we can when we raise some money.”