Lisa 9R, I could hear your voice in my head as I walked around the museum-- Suzuki RM 125 in one spot -- walked a couple of steps --- Gary Nixon leathers.... photos below.
The real reason I came to Oklahoma City was to meet a man. I had talked with him on the phone a couple of times, but needed to see him, to let him know in person that I am not angry at him. That I forgive him. I know that he did not go out on June 12th with the intention of killing my son. It was a tragic, tragic accident. One that has forever changed many, many lives.
He met me at Soda Pops, another iconic Rt.66 stop. I had been apprehensive about finally meeting him. Would pent up anger that I thought wasn't there anymore bubble to the surface, would I just want to go pound him a couple of times with my fists? None of those things happened. We started with a handshake and pulled into a light hug. Admired each others motorcycles, he had painted a memorial to Tommy on the fender of his white Harley, and went into soda pops for a cup of coffee.
He led me into town, even giving me quarters for the ridiculous toll system here. You have to have change --- no other way. What motorcyclist carries loose change in an easy to get to spot? He had booked and paid for a room at a Hampton. He left me to get settled why he went home to get his truck. Took me out for BBQ and suggested I try the fried Okra. It was incredible. We learned more about each other, our families, talked of the draft, Vietnam, guns in schools, depression. He had offered to take me where ever I wanted to go. I originally thought I wanted to go into Oklahoma City and see the Memorial, but I was tired, mostly emotionally. So he took me on a quick scenic tour to see a restored barn on a HUGE beautiful cattle ranch, picture Sagamore Farm, for cattle. Coolest turn out sheds I have ever seen. We hugged goodbye outside my hotel. He is a disabled veteran of Vietnam, a father of 3 sons, a husband and a gentleman. He was, still is and will always be devastated by the events of that June aft. I am hoping that this meeting was healing for us both.