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Black Diamond’s Ride Has Just Begun TIMES Publisher ................ Good Life Publications Managaing Editor ................Gail R. Thomas Copy Editor ........................ Genelle Bedokis Layout ........................... Michael A. Thomas Writers ................................ Gail R. Thomas Jared Peyton Joann Dunnigan John Woods Robert Shelby Photographers .................... Wes Bennett Michael A.Thomas

H.O.G. Chapter #2345 Officers     President ................ Robert Shelby Asst. Director ............... Dan Wells Secretary ...................... Jill Shelby Treasurer ................. Jackie Zimbro Head Road Captain: Randy Puckett Road Captains ........... Carl Volanski Bert Gualdoni Rick Wickman Safety Officer ........... John Woods Activities Director ......... Roger Smith Membership ....... Robert Bateman Photographer ............... Roger Smith Ladies of Harley ..... Betty Ann Smith Dealer Representatives .................... Rodney Cabaness Shad Zimbro Meeting Time: Monthly 6PM 3rd Thursday Check Website for Location

BLACK DIAMOND HARLEY-DAVIDSON TIMES is published 4 times a year: spring, summer, fall and winter. No parts of this publication, including pictures and advertisements, may be reproduced without permisson from BLACK DIAMOND HARLEY-DAVIDSON. ® 2009 Good Life Publications. For Advertising Contact Michael A. Thomas (618) 937-2019 e-mail:


In less than two years, owners Rodney Cabaness (l) and Shad Zimbro have taken Black Diamond HarleyDavidson to one of the top dealerships in the country in sales.


(Photo courtesy of the Southern Illinoisan)

t is hard to believe that Black Diamond Harley-Davidson is not even two years old. In less time than it takes most new dealerships to get their feet on the ground, Black Diamond H-D has made a name for itself not only in the Harley world –they are one of the fastest rising Harley dealerships in the nation—but also in the southern Illinois region where their community involvement and promotion driven marketing have attracted not only new customers but plenty of good will and a morale boost in hard economic times. Rodney Cabaness and Shad Zimbro are co-owners of Black Diamond. The two long-time friends and riders saw a golden opportunity when they purchased the former Campbell’s Harley-Davidson in Marion and renamed it Black Diamond Harley-Davidson. The name was practically a no-brainer for a region that is rich in coal mining history where nearly every family can claim somebody connected to the coal industry in one way or another. Black Diamond is also located a Albert Pujols homerun from the Southern Illinois Miners baseball stadium, which opened shortly before Cabaness and Zimbro made their appearance on the scene. Cabaness and Zimbro each brought their own strengths to the partnership. Cabaness worked his way up to vice-president of Weeks Chevrolet in West Frankfort and already had a reputation for savvy salesmanship and marketing. Zimbro had the hands-on experience of working at a Harley-Davidson dealership with his time at Dale’s Harley-Davidson in Mt. Vernon. Together they formed a team that complimented each other nicely. One of the first changes that passersby noticed was the addition of an outdoor stage to the parking lot. The stage is the focal point every Saturday when Black Diamond provides customers and the curious with live music and free food, all in a family friendly atmosphere.

World Record Holder Bubba Blackwell will make a two-day apprearance at Black Diamond H-D in Marion to do stunts and jumps on his Harley-Davidson. The event is free and open to the public.


Once inside the store, customers can find a huge inventory of bikes, both new and used. It is little wonder that Cabaness and Zimbro are already in the process of expanding to accommodate their phenomenal growth. There is also a large display of gear and accessories and occasionally wild promotions that result in customers standing shoulder to shoulder to snap up bargains at incredible discounts. With Black Diamond’s second anniversary coming in September, Cabaness and Zimbro are far from done with what they want to accomplish. There is plenty more coming from these two. The ride has just begun.


saturday AuguST 29 Run begins and ends at duquoin state faiRgRounds cards will be drawn during stops at washington countY conserVation park, Mt. Vernon kroger, rend lake at harbor oaks (lunch), black diaMond harleY-daVidson and uniVersitY Mall carbondale.

reGistration 9 am – 11 am single rider Two riders,same bike dinner TickeT

$25 $35 $15

HarleY raFFle TickeT


(for non-riding participants)

cost includes run registration, light lunch, snacks along the ride, after-ride steak dinner and parking at duquoin state fair.

SponSorS: marion, il

to register in advance for the poker run please visit our website at

Great boars of fire Henry PrintinG Prairie farms river radio soutHern illinois HealtHcare soutHern illinoisan Wsil tv 3 BLACK DIAMOND HD TIMES • Summer 2009

com jacket is a great idea to help prevent sunburn and tattoo fading from sun exposure. Adjustable cuff and waist tabs, Mandarin collar, and two zippered hand-warmer pockets. Reflective piping and Bar and Shield logo on left chest and back. Mesh jackets are available in two different styles which are both very affordable. The mesh jacket goes great with the hydration vest.

Don’t Let

Hot Summer Temps

Get The Best of You or Your Bike

Air Condition The Ride By Joann Dunnigan, Motorclothes Manager


ummer is almost here and the temperatures are rising. Luckily Harley-Davidson has come up with several great new products to help with those hot rides. Hot weather riding has its own set of rules. Staying hydrated by drinking water is one of them. The next best thing to air conditioning would be the Genuine Harley-Davidson Hydration vest. With brand new technology the Hydration Vest can keep you cool and hydrated on the outside. The vest is lined with polyacrylite crystals that absorb and hold water to keep the rider cool. It's very easy to use, Soak the vest for up to 10 minutes to absorb water and put it on. The vest is fully hydrated after 10 minutes. Wear under a mesh or perforated jacket for best results. During the ride, the vest slowly releases the water in the form of a gas. This evaporation creates a cooling effect against the body to keep you cool and comfortable during hot weather riding. The vest also has a zippered front and stretch side panels for a custom fit. The Polyacrylite crystals last up to approximately 1 year or 50 uses. The next great summer product would be the mesh jacket. This jacket lets you stay cool, look good, and remain protected all summer. Allover mesh allows for maximum airflow throughout the jacket keeping you cool. Removable lightweight body armor pockets at shoulders and elbows give you maximum protection while riding. Reflective graphics for greater visibility. This 4


H-D SYN3 Oil Protects Engine


By Jarod Peyton, Parts Manager verybody's watchin' their nickels and dimes these days, and rightly so, but in the midst of all the penny pinching, we've spotted a trend that's worth talking about. Oil. During the hot summer months, when the temps climb, so do the chances of your engine being damaged by heat. Using the Harley Davidson SYN3 Synthetic Lubricant will help you protect your ride by providing you with numerous benefits. Keeps the engines tranny's and driving chaincases cleaner and offers long- term protection. Is formulated for reduced oil consumption, improved wear protection, long temp stability over detergents to reduce engine deposits and superior overall field performance. Meets the anti-wear lubriety requirements of all transmission gears. Offers superior performance in high output engines, because it provides high temperature film strength. This means the lubricant maintains film thickness in high power output and high engine speed conditions, keeping the metal parts from rubbing together, resulting in less wear. You can change to SYN3 at any time, and it can be used in your trans and primary. So that means that you don't have to carry or keep multiple lubricants. When it comes to helping our customers get value for their ? service dollars, SYN3 is a product that delivers. Our customers want what's best for their bikes, and now more than ever, it makes sense for you to protect your motorcycle.. So fill 'em up, and let SYN3 work its magic. Your bike will definitely return the favor.

oming events

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ust when you start to notice that summer is turning the corner into autumn, you’ll fel the excitement in the air. Nope, it’s not that the big yellow school busses are rolling again. It’s not the band warming up for high school football season. Have you guessed it? It’s the BLACK DIAMOND HARLEY-DAVIDSON SECOND ANNIVERSARY PARTY1 And it’s going to last three days. You might think that a second anniversary party might only last two days, but not at Black Diamond. Besides, if they did that they couldn’t call it THREE HOG NIGHT, which is what they’re naming the bash to celebrate their incredible success in the short time they’ve been open and to thank customers, wannabee customers and friends who share their excitement over the rumble of a Harley. Plans aren’t even complete yet for all the celebrations that might be going on that weekend, but you can be sure that there will be live music on both Friday and all day Saturday and great food, including a special biker’s breakfast to anyone showing up on Saturday morning. Keep you eyes open for details on a logo contest. You can design a logo just for the 2nd anniversary tee shirt which you can be sure will be the uniform of the day. Saturday will feature a hay stack marathon and rodeo events hat’s a party without music? And on July 22, Black to entertain the Diamond will be throwing a big one with music crowd. Sunday all day long as bands from throughout Southern Il- sports the annual linois take their best shot at winning the BD Music MDA Poker Run. in H-D contest. Planning for this one has been going on for some “We probably time. Bands wanting to participate in the contest need to pick up support a hunan entrée packet at Black Diamond or Whithers Broadcasting who dred poker runs is helping in the planning of the event. “We hope to have a mini- throughout the mum of 12 bands competing that day,” says Jeremy Pinkston. year,” says Jeremy “We’ll have two stages set up so that two bands can be alternating Pinkston, “but this songs. The last song that each band performs will be videotaped, one is ours. This and made available online. Then the public can vote and those is the only poker votes will be combined with the judges to choose a winner.” run that is sponThe winning band gets $1,000 from Black Diamond and $500 sored by Black worth of time in a recording studio of their choice. Diamond, and all Leave it to Black Diamond not to miss a chance to promote proceeds go to the a good cause. The Red Cross will be holding a blood drive that Muscular DystroSaturday also. Turnout for blood drives under previous owners phy Association. had been so low that the Red Cross was hesitant to hold another at Last year we had the dealership. But last year Black Diamond— on their first blood torrential rains and drive— gave a HD tee shirt to everyone who donated. There were we still had about 150 bikers take part. This year, if the weather so many people wanting to donate blood that they actually had to cooperates, we should have 300-350.” turn donors away. It’s all happening the weekend of September 25, 26, and 27. So come to the party on Saturday, July 22. Enjoy a little Black Daimond turns two with prizes and surprises. You won’t music. Enjoy a little food. Give a little life to someone else and want to miss this one. you’ll leave there sayin’ “I feel good.”




munity College Board, on Thursday and outlined a plan to donate the scholarship money directly to the foundations of four community colleges in southern Illinois. High school seniors granted a scholarship would have to attend the community college in their district. “I am so pleased that when Mr. Cabaness considered giving scholarship money, he thought about community colleges first,” Alongi said. “To donate money that will benefit a high school senior in 45 different high schools is a very unique effort.” Each college is matching the Black Diamond gift to make the scholarships $1,000 each. (Community colleges receiving money will be John A. Logan College, Rend Lake College, Shawnee Community College, and Southeastern Illinois College.)

Photo by Joyce Hope

Black Diamond Harley-Davidson owners Rodney Cabaness (l) and Shad Zimbro present Shawnee Community College president Dr. Larry Peterson with a check for $6,000 to be used for student scholarships. The dealership gave a total of $22,500 in scholarship money to four community colleges in southern Illinois.

BLACK DIAMOND ANNOUNCES ‘UNIQUE’ SCHOLARSHIP EFFORT By Shannon Woodworth MARION — Black Diamond Harley-Davidson is providing scholarship money to graduating seniors at more than 40 southern Illinois high schools. “The entire nation is facing hard times right now and we realize that some families would not be able to send their children to college without financial assistance,” said Rodney Cabaness, co-owner of the Black Diamond. “We simply believe education is important and we hope the money we are able to provide will give a boost to help a graduating senior continue their education.” Said Cabaness, “Southern Illinois and our customers have been incredibly good to us and the opportunity to give back to the communities that support us is something we felt compelled to do.” Cabaness met with Guy Alongi, chairman of the Illinois Com-

“By showing our support for community colleges, we’ve asked community colleges to show support for our scholarship effort,” Cabaness said. In addition to showing support to the region’s community colleges, Cabaness said Black Diamond would also encourage scholarship recipients to sign up with Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s “Two-Plus-Two” program that allows the university to track a student’s progress from community college to the university. Dr. Larry Peterson, president of Shawnee Community College in Ullin, said the money will be a huge boost for college-bound students in Shawnee’s college district, with some of the most impoverished areas in the state. But, he said, it is not just about the money. “A private-public partnership with a business in these economic times is a breath of fresh air when about all the news on the economy is bad,” Peterson said. “Black Diamond has to be commended.”

LITTLE RIDERS DAY A BIG SUCCESS MARION — When folks at Black Diamond throw a party, one thing they promise is that nobody gets left out. There was certainly no child left behind this month at Little Riders’ Day, when staff turned their parking lot and their attention over to the kids, providing activities, games and food for a fun filled Saturday. Now everybody knows that kids don’t buy Harleys, so why all the effort spent just Marion FIre and Police departments were on hand to give kids close-up loooks of their vehicles. to entertain the tots through teens age group? Well everybody knows that lots of kids love motorcycles, whether they coveting Dad’s or drooling over that Sportster across the street. “ But there’s more to it than that,” says marketing director Jeremy Pinkston who spearheads activities like Little Riders’ Day. “We don’t really want to be seen as the stereotype bikers, the old rug-



An unidentified grandfather takes his granddaughter to enjoy the inflatables at “Little Riders Day”.

ged Hells Angels types. Actually our customers are very real people with families and family events are always promoted and always popular at Black Diamond. We are a community.”

Little Riders Day featured an air filled bouncing playground, basketball shoots, a batting cage, a live remote, Dr. Seuss characters from Paradise Alley Players, and other treats for the younger set, such as Angie Wyatt from WSIL-TV3 with her Timmy the Tractor character. Ident-AKid was on hand and over 100 kids were registered courtesy of Black Diamond. And if the little ones got tired of looking at all the mototcycles, they could climb inside a real fire truck or police car as Marion’s finest were on hand to answer questions and give a helping lift into the cab. There was even a helicopter landing by the Air Evac Lifeteam. Oh and don’t forget the food, brats, hot dogs, pizza, chips and soda. “I think we went through more food than we’ve ever served at any other event,” Pinkston laughed. “They just kept eating, so we just kept buying. Actually, it was such a hit that I think we may do it again in the fall – we’ll make this one a semi-annual event.”

Clockwise from top: (1) The landing of the Air Evac Lifeteam helicopter thrilled the crowd. (2) Dr. Seuss’s Cat in the Hat character and other performers from the Paradise Alley Players gave an up close performance to the kids. (3) The inflatables provided hours of fun kid time.

(All Photos by Wes Bennett)




World Record Holder to be at Black Diamond July 17-18th!

By Gail Rissi Thomas opping a wheelie on a 600 pound Harley may seem to be an awesome stunt even for a daredevil, but for Bubba Blackwell, it’s just a little bit of showing off, nothing like the breathtaking, spectacular stunts that he performs to thrill the enormous crowds that attend his exhibitions throughout the country. You may have seen his performances on YouTube, Nightline or Jay Leno, but on Friday and Saturday, July 17-18, Blackwell and his show will be in Marion, and Southern Illinoisans will have the opportunity to meet the nationally known Alabama daredevil and witness first hand his star studded motorcycle stunts. And you are personally invited—free of charge— courtesy of Black Diamond Harley Davidson. 8


Bubba Blackwell has broken every one of Evel Kneivel’s records as well as 42 bones in a few jumps that almost cost the daredevil his life. provided

Blackwell made his first jump at the tender age of eight, not on a Harley, but on a bicycle, which he managed to propel over a row of garbage cans to entertain the other kids in the neighborhood. That taste of fame was only the first step in a long pursuit of challenges that become more dangerous and unbelievable with every event. Blackwell began racing motorcycles at an early age, and in one short year on the racing circuit he earned the AMA/CCS motorcycle heavyweight superbike national champion title, and soon became a two-time winner at the Daytona Super Speedway. Since becoming a stunt performer, Blackwell has jumped his star spangled Harley XR-750 over everything from cars to busses to

The events around the country grow more incredible and the crowds just keep getting larger. It is not unusual to draw over 6,000 to 7,000 people at a stunt at over $20 a ticket. In Marion on July 17-18, however, something even more amazing will happen. Black Diamond is presenting Bubba Blackwell as their gift to customers, friends and fans of Black Diamond. The details on what and how he will jump have not even been publicized. Will Bubba jump 1,000 kegs of beer? 33 PortaPottys? A helicopter with blades whirling? At this time nobody at Black Diamond is saying, but one thing is certain: electricity will be in the air.

Bubba Blackwell (l) will be joined by two other stunt riders: LukeDuke Emmons, and Andrew Griffy.“These guys are both tremendous riders,” Blackwell says. “Bring your happy shoes because we’re gonna put on a show!” provided

semi trucks. Being often compared to world-renowned daredevil Evil Kneivel is not a comment that Blackwell shuns, but rather embraces, admitting that Kneivel was a major influence on his own stunt designs and an inspiring challenge to try to meet. In 1998 Blackwell broke Kneivel’s 19 car jumping record by successfully clearing 20 cars on his Harley-Davidson XR 750, the only time that Kneivel’s record was ever broken using the same type motorcycle.

“I am sponsored by the greatest motorcycle manufacturer in the world.” Blackwell says. “And when I do a show I know how to entertain a crowd. I have a really great sound system and do everything with a microphone in my helmet.” “The way I look at it,” Blackwell continued, “there’s only two outcomes to one of my jumps. One of them is good. The other one is bad. Either way I’m gonna give you something to talk about.” Southern Illinois, be there. This one’s for you.

As the stunts have become more dangerous, the crowds have flocked to the events in record numbers. In Del Mar, California, 31,000 screaming fans turned out to witness his jump over 14 busses, provided and in 1999, 8.5 million people watched as Blackwell flew his Harley over 14 semis before a coast to coast Tonight Show audience. In 2001, it seemed that Blackwell’s luck had run out, when he nearly lost his life trying to clear 22 cars on a deeply graded horse track, resulting in a long recovery, part of which Blackwell spent in a coma and on life support. It took nearly two years to work his way back up to daredevil jumps, but by 2003, Blackwell was at it again, performing a jump over 10 Peterbilt Trucks, followed by sailing over 15 new Porsche automobiles at Reading, Pa.



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Shelby, Pre



si d I always like to welcome ert en b o our new members to our chapter each month and hope you enjoy your time spent with fellow riders on our quest to “ride and have fun,” the H.O.G. motto. As you read this newsletter for July, August and September, our first quarterly newsletter inside Black Diamond’s new magazine venture, all the officers are excited to have such a nice magazine available for future use for our newsletter. We want to thank the dealership for bringing us along for “the ride.”

We had a successful fundraiser at the June 6 and 7 NASCAR Days of Thunder Simulation event, and raised approximately $400 for the chapter at our dice roll. Thanks to all who worked the weekend and the dealership for including us, and for the food and entertainment. The money will be used for chapter member benefits and several charities which we support each year, something we should all be proud of.

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of Touring banner for his records. We also met the guy from the O’Fallon Stone Celts Chapter who will be hosting the 2010 Illinois H.O.G. Rally next June in O’Fallon. They were anxious to get started planning and asked for our help. Since this is the first quarterly newsletter, we have lots of dates for meetings and rides included, so mark your calendar and try to be with us for all that you can. Be sure to invite other friends and riders to join our chapter and bring them with you as a guest to a meeting or ride to grow the chapter. We will also be sending out reminder cards each month as a way to stay in touch and make any changes to events such as rides. We will be giving away two $25 Black Diamond gift cards at each meeting and have our 50/50 for the “Ride for Kids” fund. I also would like to thank all the officers who have been with me for the past 18 months and their good ideas and efforts for the chapter. Congratulations for being a member of the largest motorcycle club in the world. Ride safe and often.

Don’t Forget Your Pre-Ride Safety Check By John Woods Good day to everyone from Safety,

S a fe t y




As the weather breaks we get the oo ds W itch to get on our rides and get n some wind. A lot of us have oh already put many miles on our bikes this year. I would like to give you some information from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. It's simple really, but it's something we often forget to do, a pre-ride safety inspection. The MSF has one on paper they call T-CLOCS sm.


The 2009 Illinois H.O.G. Rally in Springfield was held June 11 through 13, and nine members attended this year, along with hundreds of other H.O.G. members from Illinois and surrounding states. We had the opportunity to meet up with Leah Whaley, our regional manager and her husband, both from Milwaukee, and look forward to having her at our August chapter meeting as she always has some good ideas to grow our membership. We also saw a fellow H.O.G. member who had ridden 2,600 miles so far that weekend, and we took his picture for him by the ABC’s

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T Several members of the Black Diamond H.O.G. chapter attended the 2009 Illinois State Rally held at Springfield. Pictured above (l-r): Adam Wells, Brittnie Wells, Dan Wells, Debbie Wells, RobertShelby, Jill Shelby, Bill Ice and Codie Ice. Not pictured Tom & Judy Kaluitis and Bob Bateman. (Photo provided) 10


stands for tires, wheels and brakes. Do a visual of the condition of your tires; tread depth, wear, bulges. Then you should check the pressure. Look in your manual for the proper tire pressure for your scoot and remember the back tire will have a little higher pressure if you have a passenger. Check spokes if you have them and the overall condition of your rims. And the last big T is the breaks. You can visually look at them and before you roll out check the function.


which stands for controls. Check all your levers to make sure they work properly. Check all the cables to ensure that they are not in a bind and are routed properly. Look at your hoses for leaks, cracks or not rubbing on something. Check your throttle for smooth operation even when the bars are

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which stands for stands. Of course it does. Harley has a great stand. It locks in place from the weight of the bike. I have seen a few startled faces when the bike moves that few inches before the stand catches. Anyway, look at yours for a lose bolt. Make sure it is not in a bind or obstructed from doing what it's suppose to. And please don't forget to put it up before your ride off. Believe me when I say that has been done, NOT a good thing. I have a few of the hard copy T-CLOCS sm or they can be found in pdf form on the MSF website. If you want one just let me know. One last thing that is not a part of the T-CLOCS sm, it's a good habit to top the tank off with fuel before a long ride. It might be awhile before getting to the next filling station. Always ride defensively, safe and keep the rubber down.

Road Captains Play Important Role in Group Rides By Randy Puckett The Black Diamond H.O.G. Chapter #2345 of Southern Illinois usually has two chapter rides per month during our regular riding season. Our rides consist of various locations around the region and bordering states. We set up our route to our destination in advance to determine the most scenic and safest way possible. The good part about our destinations usually includes a stop to stretch and an excellent place to eat and relax for some fellowship with our members to share some stories and then back on the road for journey home. OH, let’s not forget, there’s a good spot on the way home for some dessert!! Road captains play an important role in our group rides. Responsibilities include assisting the director and assistant director in planning routes for chapter rides. Educate chapter members about riding techniques and use of hand signals used on group rides and working hand in hand with our safety officer to ensure that everyone is comfortable with the safety procedures. Road captains act as a guide on all organized chapter rides.

The role of the road captain is to lead all riders to our destinations and bring everyone back as safe as possible. This means obeying the speed limit and the laws of the land e tt, H e a d R o a k pertaining to riding our bikes. Our c d u pre-meeting before each ride dis- P cusses our route, stops, what formation that we are riding and any hand signals that will be used. Our rear road captain has a role to play as well. If for some reason our group gets split up, he will make sure that all riders will make it to our next scheduled stop. Rear road captain is also in charge of any mishaps due to problems with a bike or a severe situation. No one will be left behind. Communication between the road captain and rear road captain has been made before our departure on each ride to discuss our route, individual stops as well as safety.


is the chassis. Do a visual of the frame. Do the handle bars move freely? Check the swing arm, the suspension. Look at the belt for wear. Do a once over and look for lose bolts, nuts, etc.

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is for yep you guessed it, oil. Check the levels and check for leaks.

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L 0 C S

stands for lights. Check all your lights, front, rear, turn and brakes. Check your mirrors. Check your battery, ensure the terminals are tight and check the vent tube. Most batteries today are gel; therefore they don't have a vent tube.

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Road Captains for 2009 are Carl Volanski, Bert Gualdoni, John Woods, Roger Smith, Greg Sanders, Mike McSparin, Jack Rowland, Dan Wells, Robert Shelby, Bob Bateman, Jim Clark, Frank Clauch, Rick Whitman, Gary Gullet

TENTATIVE RIDE SCHEDULE JULY-SEPTEMBER Sunday: JULY 12, 10:00 AM New Harmony, IN • Eat @ The White House Sunday Brunch 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM Saturday: JULY 25, 1:00 PM Paducah, KY • Eat @ Texas Roadhouse Supper Ride 4:00 PM Saturday: AUGUST 8, 10:00 AM Sikeston, MO • Eat @ Lamber’s Restaurant Lunch Ride 12:00 NOON Sunday: AUGUST 23, 10:00 AM St. Libory, IL • Eat @ Chicken’s Restaurant Lunch Ride 12:00 NOON Saturday: AUGUST29 Kroger/Coach Kill Poker Run DuQuoin, IL • Sunday: SEPTEMBER 6, 10:00 AM Grand Rivers, KY • Eat @ Patti’s Restaurant Lunch Ride: 12:30 PM Saturday: SEPTEMBER 12, 1:00 PM Elizabethtown, IL • Eat @ River Restaurant Supper Ride 3:00 – 4:00 PM Sunday: SEPTEMBER 20, 6:00 AM St. Charles, MO • Ride for Kids Sunday: SEPTEMBER 27, 8:00 AM (WORK) H.O.G.’S MDA POKER RUN




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Randy is general manager of Gould’s Electric of Illinois and Michelle is a business teacher at Frankfort Community High School. The Puckett’s have taken many personal rides on their Harley and both agree on which one ranks as the best they have experienced. “The best ride I remember was one that we took with Tom and Sandra Evans to Ashville, North Carolina,” Michelle recalls. “The scenery was just beautiful. It was Easter Sunday and we went to Mass at the cathedral there. That afternoon we rode to the top of Mt. Mitchell on the Blue Ridge Parkway.”

(Photo by Michael A. Thomas)

(Each issue of Black Diamond Times will spotlight a member of the local H.O.G. Chapter. In this issue we meet Randy and Michelle Puckett of West Frankfort)


andy and Michelle Puckett have been sharing rides on a Harley for30 years. Randy got his first Harley in 1979. “He was just 18 and I was 17, “ Michelle says. “No, I wasn’t even 17 yet,” she corrects herself. “Can you imagine my mom and dad letting me ride with him when I was just 16?” “It was a chick magnet,” Randy interrupts. “Chick magnet?” Michell laughs with a look that says ‘get your facts straight’. “We were already dating,” Michelle has a better explanation. “My dad used to drive a Harley when he was dating my mom. She said she was at SIU and she’d be sitting down at one of the spots on the strip in Carbondale, and he’d ride that Harley right up on the curb. He would rev up the engine and all my mom’s girlfriends would run to the window and just squeal – ‘It’s Harvey!’ Then my mom go hop on the back of his bike and my dad would ramp back onto the street.” “Yeah, chick magnet,” Randy laughs. The Pucketts bought a new 100th Anniversary Road King in 2002, but it didn’t take them long to move up to a third bike, when they added the in 2005 so that the Road King would be available to their daughter and son-in-law, Andrea and Andy Odle, so that they could join the Pucketts on rides. The Pucketts have found a lot of fellowship in being a part of the Black Diamond H.O.G. chapter, a diversion from busy careers. 12


“It’s the highest elevation east of the Mississippi. That’s about as close to God as you can get,” Randy added. Randy is also the head road captain for the chapter. “Chapter rides are different,’ Michelle says. “They’re short; they’re fun, and the best ones are where you go to the best places to eat.” “Randy is always out there talking to someone about Black Diamond,” she adds. “Well, it’s easy to try to help them out because they’re so good to us,” Randy says. “Anytime that I ever send someone there, it seems like they give them a really good deal. We’re kind of like one big family.” “The next thing I need to get now is a sidecar. That will be my stroller for Amelia,” he says referring to their first grandchild due later this month. “Amelia may not be riding in that sidecar,” Michelle laughs. “Maybe she’ll get a ride when she’s five or six.”“Ahh probably two or three,” Randy says. Harley lovers –it’s just one big happy family.


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NOTE: Membership in NATIONAL H.O.G. is required before you can become a member of any H.O.G. Chapter. Details at:




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820 Kratzinger Hollow Road • Cobden, IL 62920 • 1-800-440-4489 BLACK DIAMOND HD TIMES • Summer 2009



Black Diamond Times  

Harley-Davidson enthusiasts in the mid-west love Black Diamond Harley-Davidson for great prices on bikes, accessories and HD apparrel