Group to support members from Rolling Thunder crash
CLAREMONT — Plans to help the family members of the Rolling Thunder Chapter 2 who died in a crash last week are under way, chapter president Denis Desilets said Tuesday.
Aaron Robar, 41, of Newport and Gary Champney, 59, of Alstead, were both killed Aug. 25 in Westmoreland during the sixth annual Rolling Thunder Chapter 2 Ride for the Fallen when an elderly driver drove into several motorcyclists.
“Aaron left two young daughters behind. These are the things I am thinking of, ‘how do we take care of his young girls?’” Desilets said.
The chapter’s 68 members have many ideas, although nothing’s set yet, from establishing a fund for the families to selling memorial patches honoring the men.
All of these ideas will be discussed at the chapters meeting next week, he said.
The board must approve any plan, he said, but most importantly Desilets said he would also look to the Robar’s and Champney’s families for approval.
“I want to make sure whatever we decide on the families are on board,” Desilets said. “I’m not here to offend anybody. We want to help.”
The driver, Robert Lockerby, 87, of Walpole crossed the center line on Route 12 and hit several motorcyclists, five were hospitalized for injuries. Lockerby died from his injured a few days later.
Champney was a husband, father of three grown children and a grandfather. Robar was a father of two young daughters.
Rolling Thunder N.H. Chapter 2 is based in Claremont. The non-profit works to support P.O.W., M.I.A., Veteran and Active Duty organizations and causes throughout central New Hampshire and Vermont, both financially and through volunteering their time.
When the accident occurred, more than 200 riders were taking part in The Ride for the Fallen to honor Army Spc. Justin A. Rollins of Newport who was killed by an improvised explosive device in Iraq in 2007.
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Meghan Pierce may be reached at email@example.com.
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