Biker Dad: 100 Bikers loudly voice their support for fallen off - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Biker Dad: 100 Bikers loudly voice their support for fallen officer, MPD


I was proud to be one of the 100 or so bikers who sent a loud message on the streets of Memphis Sunday, the evening after the shooting that left Officer Sean Bolton dead. Motorcycle clubs, many made up with local law enforcement, quickly organized a ride to show support for Officer Bolton, his family and all MPD officers. 

"We wanted to show that we have faith in our community and will take a stand for our community. So we got these bikers to come out and just surround the city with the thunder of love," Bryon O'Brien with "Faith Riders" told me. And surround the city the bikers did. 100 thundering motorcycles circled the entire 240 loop, often with folks along the route waving in support. 

Word quickly spread on social media about the ride. Members of the "Lawful Sons" Law Enforcement Motorcycle Club had members from more than one chapter show up.

Wes Talbert with the "Lawful Sons" told me "We really think it's important when you look at what officers do, they don't get into this for money. The sacrifices they make as far as schedule, increased risk. It's really important that we honor these folks who make those sacrifices." He said his club's membership, made up in great part of law enforcement officers, was shaken by the news, "as far as they are concerned you get one of them, you get them all." 

Chris and Carolyn Butler of Bartlett heard about the ride on Facebook and arrived on their Harley Davidson. "Everything Memphis is going through, finances, being short on officers, they need our support. I think they need more support from city council and everybody else," Chris Butler told me.

His wife Carolyn says they showed up "to support the officer and the officer's family, let them know that we care about them. Let them know that they're not alone. We're here to support them and love them."

The ride began and ended in the neighborhood where the shooting happened. The impact was poignant. 

"The greatest thing to me was coming through that neighborhood and less than 24 hours after what happened and see those people in the neighborhood. I hope what they see is not for intimidation but for love." Many residents came out of their homes when they heard the roar of the bikes, smiling, waving and taking pictures, clearly pleased to see the positive message rolling  down their street. 

After the ride, the group laid hands on and prayed for those officers, firefighters and military members who took part in the ride. "These guys go into a battlefield every day." O'Brien said,  "I don't think many of us understand...routine traffic stops and things that seem like they're simple. They're putting their lives on the line every single day.We just want to let these guys know that we're here for them, that we pray for them, we love them. We want to do everything we can to intercede and be there for them."

Be careful out there, and please follow me on social media.

Twitter: @WMChrisBest

Instagram: Biker_Dad_WMC

Chris Best is the Assistant News Director for WMC Action News 5. He's a husband and father of four, He's also a motorcycle enthusiast.

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