DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – Veterans, bikers, family and friends gathered at the Broken Spoke Saloon during Daytona Bike Week for a Moment of Thunder Tribute, a one of a kind experience to honor military brothers and sisters who have fallen in the name of freedom. In-advance of the 3:30pm start time, hundreds of bikers poured into the venue and lined their motorcycles up, ready to open up the throttle and let their love and gratitude roar up to the heavens above.
The Moment of Thunder at Bike Week gained national attention and touched family and friends who were grateful for the opportunity to express both a sense of loss and a show of tremendous gratitude. There’s a recurring theme with Moment of Thunder, and more people are coming forward to join us in these important events, giving us all an opportunity to find a sense of unity and, in lieu of closure, an ongoing way to show our tremendous appreciation for the men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces. As President Obama said, “Just as our troops embody the courage and character that make America’s military the finest in the world, their family members embody the resilience and generosity that make our communities strong. They serve with heroism in their homes and neighborhoods while they are without the comfort of having loved ones nearby.”
Moment of Thunder was inspired by a similar event held to honor celebrity bike builder Brad “The Wrench” Ruel who died in 2009. Many also turned out to remember loved ones and find closure, creating a huge emotional impact that continues to honor all who have died through personal sacrifice. The tribute to Brad created an enormous stir at the Wharf Rat Rally in Nova Scotia, and was considered the highlight of the show, with participation by attendees and exhibitors being much larger than what promoters had expected. Turnout was so large that the event was reported as one of the most memorable experiential moments to be staged outside of a large-scale corporate event, with wide-scale press coverage from local radio, TV, newspaper, and magazines, and tremendous buzz generated through social media outlets including Facebook, Myspace, and YouTube.