Arkansas District Couple 2017 - 2018
Tim & Bonnie Nagy
Bio comming soon.
Arkansas District Couple 2016 - 2017
Louis & Pam Wofford
Louis & Pam met in high school, have been married 42 years (and counting) and both have been employed at Weldon, Williams & Lick Printing in Fort Smith well over 40 years. They have two hard-working sons, Robert & Tim, who are both married and between them have a total of seven children.
Louis acquired his first motorcycle in 1973, a 1960-something Suzuki 105 street bike. The 105 was followed a while later by a 1974 Kawasaki KZ400, 1976 Honda CB750F and a 1981 Honda CB750F Super Sport. Around 1985 Louis sold the 750 and replaced it with a series of dirt bikes which he rode for several years, mostly in the mountains around White Rock.
From 1994 - 2011 the couple was heavily involved in the sport of hot air ballooning. Louis earned his commercial pilot certificate and with Pam as his Crew Chief the pair traveled around the South participating in balloon rallies, including the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, taking hundreds of adventurous folks for rides.
In 2011 the couple reluctantly said goodbye to ballooning and embraced their then-new roles as "Grandparents" which, in addition to their full time jobs leaves only a little spare time for outside activities. In spite of limited free time, the motorcycle bug bit again in 2013 prompting them to seek out a gently used 2008 GL1800. Since then they have logged over 16,000 miles on two wheels and have embraced a whole new group of friends
The Woffords joined GWRRA in May 2014. About a year later Louis was recruited to become Assistant Director of Chapter F in Fort Smith and a few months after that Pam became the chapter's MEC. Each has tried to perform the duties of their positions with enthusiasm and proper decorum - and have fun. If your name is listed in the Chapter F membership roster there is a very good chance you will receive a phone call from Pam sometime during the year - around the time your membership is due for renewal.
The couple attended their first ever GWRRA Rally in the Fall of 2015; the Oklahoma District Rally at Sequoyah State Park. Since then, they have attended GWRRA rallies in Marshall, TX, Harrison, AR and Branson, MO and each has taken a dozen or so training courses.
Early in 2015 Louis & Pam were selected as Arkansas Chapter F's Couple of the Year. A few short months later - much to their surprise - they were selected as the Arkansas District Couple of the Year.
The Woffords plan to visit more GWRRA rallies and gatherings in Region H (and beyond) this year, and have their sights set on riding to Billings, MT for Wing Ding in August.
They would love to have all of you come along for the adventure!
Arkansas District Couple 2014 - 2015
Tommy & Karen Brown
We will have been married for 40 yrs. in July and have 1 daughter and 2 sons. We also have 4 granddaughters and 3 grandsons that are the joy of our life. Tommy spent 3 years and 4 months in the Air Force and 15 years farming before going to work in a factory. He worked 28 years in 2 different factories before retiring and helping David Bingham move pianos, part time. Karen worked in a factory until we got married then she helped Tommy in the field. When we quit farming Karen got licensed to become a cosmetologist and worked at being a hair stylist until she retired to take care of her father. After retirement we have spent numerous miles on our Goldwing trike.
Tommy first bike was a 1975 550 Honda that he got from his brother Allen. He rode it for 5 years then sold it because he did not have anyone to ride with. His next motorcycle was a 2000 model 750 Shadow that we rode for 4 years before purchasing a 2000 model 1500 Goldwing. We became associate members of GWRRA in 2003 and members in 2005. Tommy was a Chapter Rider Educator for three years, a Chapter Director for two years and this is our second time as Chapter D's Couple of the year.
We have been to three Wing Dings with the first being in Nashville, Tn. We have been to numerous Region H Conventions, Arkansas District Conventions and Arkansas Chapter Conventions. We have been to 2 Missouri Conventions and 1 Chapter Convention. We have been to a Kansas Convention, an Oklahoma Convention and a few Mississippi Conventions. The best part of attending the conventions is meeting people and enjoying GWRRA members.
Arkansas District Couple 2013 - 2014
Bobby and Arleen Webb
We have been together for 22 years and live in a small town of Swifton, AR. We have 6 children between us, 11 grandchildren (8 boys and 3 girls). Arleen is a Registered nurse and has worked in the same place going on 42 years this year and Bobby has a lawn care service. We own a 1990 Goldwing and have been riding together for 6 years. Initially we were very limited on the amount of time we could be away from the house due to Arleen caring for her mother. The first big trip was to Wing Ding in SC. It was then Arleen decided she need to learn to ride the bike herself. Now Arleen rides the bike to work frequently and if the bike starts she is usually on it. It wasn't always that way. She was always dead set against motorcycles, that was until she rode a short distant with me one day and that's all it took.
We joined GWRRA in 2006 and since late 2007 we have been able to attend many conventions and been able to attend the last 5 Wing Dings. The best part is meeting people and enjoying life. We encourage education and safety to whoever we meet.
Arkansas District Couple 2012 - 2013
Sam and Belinda Lister
Sam has been a GWRRA member since 2006 and Belinda since 2007. According to Bud and Jan Danner Sam and Belinda are one of the most active and outgoing members of chapter L. With their other duties they are also our News Letter Editor and our Rider Educator they are truly an asset to our chapter.
Sam was born in Fort Smith Arkansas but soon moved to Carson California where he lived until he was eleven and then moved back to Arkansas. Sam moved in with his grandmother and finished school at Plainview High. Belinda was born in Hickory Flat Arkansas just north of Searcy, AR. Belinda's parents at the time was living in Indiana and was home in Arkansas for a visit. After returning to Indiana Belinda's parents decided to move back home to Pangburn, Arkansas where Belinda attended high school and excelled in sports.
Sam and Belinda met in 2006 on line on Match.com. They started chatting and by May of 2006 were dating. Sam at that time was living in Philadelphia and decided to move back home to Arkansas to be closer to family and to his new girlfriend. Sam and Belinda dated until May 8, 2010 when they were married in a motorcycle wedding in the little town of Bellefonte, AR. We have eight children between us. Sam has three boys Phillip, Allen, Kevin, one daughter Tamara and a daughter-in-law Melissa. I have two sons Cody, Jonaus and a daughter -in-law Rachel. We have eight grandchildren between us. The grandchildren range from age 18-1year. We also have three fur babies, Max, Peaches, and Bella. Sam works for Richlogistics as Safety director where he has been in the trucking industry for over 35 years. Belinda is attending Ashford University on line to achieve her BA in Anthropology.
Sam joined GWRRA in 2006 and Belinda 2007 we have been active in many positions these last six years. We have held positions as Chapter Director, Assistant Director, Rider Educator, News Letter Editor, Ride Coordinator, ME, and Chapter Couple of the year. We are both Master Tour Riders, and LTP Instructors.
We both have been riding motorcycle for over 30 years and bought our first goldwing in 2005. We now own a new 2008 1800 goldwing and love riding the winding roads of Arkansas and visiting the nearby states. We love camping, antiquing, and just enjoying the outdoors and our grandchildren.
Charlie & Debbie Wirges
Arkansas District Couple 2011 - 2012
We have been married for thirty-four years, we have two children (both boys) the oldest is Chris and he is a chef in Little Rock, AR. The youngest is Kevin and he's an accountant in Miami, FL.
Debbie is employed at Arkansas Otolaryngology Clinic in Little Rock. She's been there almost thirty-seven years. I'm a machinist, I work for Union Pacific Railroad and have been there almost thirty-two years.
We've been motorcycling for almost four years. My first motorcycle was a 2006 Yamaha 1100 Silverado which I purchased in 2007. In September 2008 I purchased a 2002 Gold Wing, Silver Stream in color. We are members of ABATE, GWRRA, and Board Members with March of Dimes, Bikers for Babies campaign for 2011. We are also friends with the Rock Riders of Little Rock, AR ,a chapter of CMA. We enjoy our motorcycling adventures and making new friends. Debbie enjoys photography and her Mary Kay business. I enjoy fishing and playing guitar. We also enjoy photography.
We enjoy meeting new people and making new friends especially in GWRRA. We have both learned a lot from GWRRA about motorcycle safety and how to have fun at the same time. As our journey continues in GWRRA we hope to have more great experiences as we share with others about this great organization.
Bryan & Emily Dunham
Arkansas District Couple 2010 - 2011
2009 Chapter W Couple of the Year
We were married on March 28, 1998 after only knowing each other for 8 months. We both grew up in Blytheville and we currently live in Blytheville. We have three children between us, Christopher 13, Brianna 11, and McKenna 5. We also have a pet cat. Emily is a receptionist and insurance clerk and Family Medicine and Bryan is an IT computer specialist. We own an '88 1500 Goldwing and have been riding together since we got married. Riding is one of the few activities that we both enjoy doing together. As a child Emily was first introduced to motorcycles by her father. After a near accident, she swore that she would NEVER ride again. Once Bryan talked her into getting on his motorcycle she literally fell in love with riding. We decided to join GWRRA first, to ride with a group of friends. Now we really enjoy learning about motorcycle safety. We can't imagine our lives without GWRRA.
We are Charter members of Chapter W in Blytheville, AR. We have held several positions in the Chapter, Bryan is the treasurer and MAD coordinator. He is certified as a CPR/First Aid instructor as well as a seminar instructor in Rider Ed and LTD. Emily is the newsletter editor.
We are both level 3 in the Rider Education Program and have applied for our level 4 as of April 1, 2010.
Greg & Tina McKinney
2009 Chapter H Couple of the Year
2009 - 2010 District Couple of the Year
Our next spotlight shines on Greg and Tina McKinney. They are members of Chapter H in Batesville. Don and Denise Provence, their Chapter Director, said that in the short time that Greg and Tina have been in GWRRA they have displayed the highest levels of commitment that they have ever seen.
Greg & Tina attend every function and training seminar offered. They enjoy participating in the games at the rallies. They are very outgoing and competitive. They have won several trophies and certificates. They won the Directors Cup for 2007, 2008, several Dress Competitions and the 2007 Chili Cook Off
They have traveled to more states than they can count. Nothing has slowed them down from achieving their many goals. They believe in GWRRA and enjoy being a part of this great organization.
They designed Chapter H's first website and they maintain it. Their duties in Chapter H are COY, M.E.D. Coordinators, Webmasters, Scrapbook Editor, Historian and they take pictures for the Chapter. No matter what job you give them they give it their 100%.
Greg and Tina have both achieved their Level 4 status in the Levels Program. They have attended every District Rally, Function, Education Weekend, Yearly Meeting and Leadership Training offered.
They are proud of their 2005 White Gold Wing and trailer. It is full of chrome, lights and is pinstriped. Tina bought it for their Anniversary present. Greg has been riding since he was sixteen years old and has owned six motorcycles.
Greg was born in Hammond, Indiana. He served in the US Army and received four MOS's before receiving his Honorable Discharge. He attended the Alabama Community College and received degrees in Management and Communications. He worked in management for 9 years where he held several positions as Supervisor, Manager and Training Director where he trained managers.
He became a Police Officer for the City of Gary, Indiana. He was a member of the SWAT Team, Certified Bomb Technician and Field Training Officer. Greg also served on the Executive Board of the FOP. Greg is now retired. His other hobbies are woodworking.
Tina was born in Forrest City, Arkansas. She is a College Graduate and a Graduate of Baptist School of Nursing in Memphis, TN. Tina has been a Registered Nurse for more that 16 years and works at WRMC in Batesville.
She has always loved motorcycles. She has owned two motorcycles of her own while growing up and 3 four wheelers. Her other hobbies are craft making and quilting! She has nine sewing machines and a long-arm quilting machine! She works very hard within the Chapter.
Greg and Tina have six children between them. The two oldest sons are making their careers in the US Army. Their oldest daughter is a manager for Best Buy. They are very proud of their children. Tina said¦ it is our time now!
They just sold their farm to downsize and enjoy life more. Greg said it is a work in progress. It has a 4,000 square foot shop building and they plan to convert it into a Gold Wing / Woodworking Shop!
They are dedicated to GWRRA and believe the FUN is what holds everything together!
"REGION H ROCKS"
Johnny & Mildred Glasscock
Arkansas District Couple 2008 - 2009
Our next Spotlight shines on Johnny & Mildred Glasscock of Chapter W in Blytheville, Arkansas. We are proud to have their participation in the Couple's program because they are one of our newest Chapters. CD John Bernier says they have been an important part of their chapter's new growth. We welcome them! What better way to start off your first year in GWRRA!
Johnny and Mildred are both native Arkansans. They were married in 2001, still practically newlyweds. Both had been married before and their story is really an interesting one. In 1998 Johnny was an insurance adjuster for Mildred's insurance carrier. After a minor fender bender, Johnny called to say he would be coming to look at her car. Mildred worked nights so Johnny said to leave the car unlocked. When she went to work that night she found Johnny's card in the seat. About a month later someone tried to run her off the road and damaged the other side of her car. After working all night and being in court all day, she finally got home and Johnny shows up. They got acquainted and Johnny asked to take her flying, (and yes, he is a pilot) and she said no. But Johnny was persistent and kept calling, using the car as the excuse to call. Finally she gave in and he did fly to Corning to pick her and then to Pocahontas for Pizza. What a first date!!
Johnny continued to call and finally Mildred told him that her life was so busy with kids, working nights and a second job that she didn't have time to date. He just kept calling. A short time later she gave in. They started dating in 1998. Mildred says, "I decided he was my destiny, why else would God keep sending him back to me. I had better not keep testing him "my car might not survive." So now she says he's the best thing that ever happened to her.
They both have children. Johnny has a daughter, Sylvia, 28 and two grandchildren, Alyssa, 8, and Skylar, 6. He also has a son, Johnny Lee who is 33. Mildred has three children, Jesse Dean, 20(and grandson Jesse Jr. who is 4 months old) a daughter Kristen Dean, 18 and another son, Thomas Dean, 15.
Now on to motorcycles. Johnny has ridden off and on throughout his life, even four-wheelers, racing and jumping, etc. He has had many motorcycles including a Honda CB100, CB750, a Kawasaki 454, Honda Shadow 600 & 750, then a Goldwing 1200 and their current Goldwing 1500. Mildred was scared to death of motorcycles all her life, so when Johnny finally convinced her to ride in 2005, after several "very still and stiff miles" she now loves riding. They are having a great time and look forward to more good times with their Gold Wing friends!!
When they aren't on their Gold Wing, they have other activities they enjoy. Johnny is a pilot who loves flying airplanes and Ultra-Lights. They also enjoy fishing, computers, NasCar races, and of course spending time with their grandchildren and family. Mildred loves reading, photography and gardening.
Johnny is employed at Paul Newell Auto Collision Center as an auto body technician. Mildred is an LPN, working for Dr. James Russell at Family Medicine Associates in Blytheville.
As you can tell, they are a very busy couple that enjoys life and adventure. We are very glad that they are representing Chapter W as GWRRA Ambassadors. We look forward to seeing them at our Spring Fling and Couple of the Year Selection.
Wayne & Kathy Hall
Arkansas District Couple 2007 - 2008
Arkansas Chapter D in Jonesboro introduced their Chapter Couple of the Year, Wayne & Kathy Hall, at the end of December of 2005. They came to our first Spring Fling as a brand new Chapter Couple. They really enjoyed themselves. They have been on the go ever since then, letting everyone know how great GWRRA is. So here's a little history on Wayne and Kathy.
They were both born in Arkansas, Wayne in Lake City, and Kathy in Monette. They have been married for twenty. They reside in Jonesboro. They have two sons, Brad & wife Linda, and Lance &wife Shelley. And they are the proud grandparents of Grandsons, Dillon (7) and Evan (1). Now let's get to the important stuff, Grandson Dillon has been riding since he was two years old. He got his first gas powered 4-wheeler at two, his first dirt bike at four and now is riding his Pa's 350 4-wheeler. Kathy says, "What will he be on next". Maybe a Honda???
Kathy also says that their work interferes with their riding and they look forward to all that work coming to an end so they can RIDE, RIDE, RIDE! Wayne has been with Hytrol Conveyer Company for 38 years and Kathy has been with the US Postal Service for 30 years. Maybe that retirement isn't too far off? In the meantime, they both ride their own ride. Wayne has a 2004 1800 and Kathy drives her 1500 Trike! Go girl! (We do have a lot of Lady Riders in Arkansas)
Since joining GWRRA in 2005, they have been very active. They went to their first Arkansas District Rally in 2005 and again in 2006. They have been involved with everything at the chapter level, always volunteering their services anywhere they could to be of help. They attended their first Wing Ding in Nashville this past year. They have made most of the chapter rallies, and really get put out when work doesn't cooperate with their GWRRA plans. They have also attended Rider Ed courses at Morrilton and are real believers of our slogan, Friends for Fun, Safety and Knowledge.
They are both expecting to be very busy in 2007. After participating as Chapter Historian, Scrapbook Editor and Chapter Couple for Chapter D, they have now taken on a new endeavor as Assistant Chapter Directors. They plan to attend the Horizons Program in January, the Spring Fling in February and also the Knowledge Enhancement Program in February.
I'm sure you will meet them on the road somewhere, or at one of our many events planned for all our Gold Wing riders this year. And for sure, at our Spring Fling, they will be in the Couple of the Year Selection. They know it will be a busy year but it will also bring lots of "Fun, Fun, Fun"!
Region H Couple of the Year 2007-2008
Arkansas District Couple 2006 - 2007
Chapter J 2005 Couple of The Year
Ken & Rhonda Holmes
This spotlight shines on Ken & Rhonda Holmes from Arkansas Chapter J! Ken & Rhonda reside in Dover, Arkansas. They have two sons, Josh, 19, a freshman at UCA and Aaron, 16, a junior at Dover High School. Both Ken and Rhonda are native Arkansans. Ken was born in Blytheville and Rhonda in Russellville. They are both employed in the Dover School District. Ken is in administration as Special Education Supervisor and Rhonda is a second grade teacher. Now on to the personal side of their life.
Ken was raised in a military family. So as a result, he got used to being on the go and has pretty much enjoyed being on the go! He lived in Turkey in the first grade. During the family's time in Florida, Ken got to watch the Space Shuttle go up at Cape Canaveral. Ken's uncle introduced him to motorcycles and it stuck! He loves to ride and you will probably see him in route to work on his Gold Wing most of the time.
Rhonda was raised in a minister's family. Her family all sang together as she was growing up. They were a very close family through the years. Rhonda's best friend, her mother, passed away this past July. She has felt the loss deeply, a real adjustment for her. She visits her grandparents, who are still in the area, and that helps her a lot. She and Ken have had other adjustments in their life to get used to. Ken lost his father this past year also. Ken's dad had open-heart surgery and just never recovered. They also had some empty nesting going on, as Josh went away to college in the fall.
They do manage to stay busy!! They have just stepped up as Chapter Directors for Arkansas J and they were already Chapter Couple. So add to that, their jobs, their church activities and family duties, they are busy! Rhonda also does the Chapter Newsletter and it looks great.
Ken and Rhonda have a great story about their lives together. Their first date was ironically on a motorcycle. Ken picked her up at 9AM on a May morning, and they went riding to the nearest mountains. They rode to Pettit Jean, Mt. Nebo and then to Mt. Magazine. (I don't know if I would have made it past Mt. Nebo!!!) But it didn't faze Rhonda too much, since they ended up at the altar a short time later. Ken continued to ride until their two boys came along. After having children, food and diapers were more important, so his bike wasn't used very much and needed repairs.
When Ken and Rhonda decided that she would go to college, Ken automatically took extra jobs to put Rhonda through school. He had many different jobs. He took on the responsibility as Assistant Coach for the high school football and baseball teams. He worked every summer. He worked odd jobs at the Dover school mowing grass; he umpired Little League Babe Ruth games and worked at a store delivering furniture, refrigerators and other appliances. As Rhonda was going to school one day, she told Ken that she was going to get him a Gold Wing, when she graduated and they could afford it. He never complained and took on all the extra work to help her get through school. So it took them five years after she graduated before they got the bike, but in April of 1999, Rhonda got Ken his Gold Wing, a black 1998 GL 1500. She says that since she's known Ken, he always dreamed of owning a Gold Wing.
Ken had traveled on three major trips in his bachelor days on a Honda 750. He put over 40,000 miles on the 750 in four years. On their 15th anniversary, their present to each other was a trip to Colorado and the Grand Canyon. They were gone for nine days and put almost 3,000 miles on their new bike. That trip will always be very special to them. Their 25th anniversary will be in 2009. Their big dream is to ride to Alaska and take a cruise. Then ride back home on their bike.
Ken and Rhonda joined GWRRA in 1999, but their family was still young enough that their priorities were mainly on them and their activities. They started becoming more and more involved in the last few years. They went to Wing Ding in Grapevine, TX in 2004 with a big group from several chapters. They have been to the Arkansas District Rally for the past two years. They had made plans for Wing Ding in Indiana this past summer and were over halfway there when they got the call that Rhonda's mother had passed away. They returned home. They had planned to go on up through Maine after Wing Ding, but hopefully they can do that this year. They do look forward to going to Wing Ding in Nashville this summer. And many of the District Rallies, Arkansas a #1 priority!
We appreciate Ken and Rhonda as ambassadors from Chapter J and look forward to seeing them in February as they join in the 2006 Arkansas District Couple Selection in Morrilton. They are destined to be around for a long time to enjoy Ken's Gold Wing because they are just youngsters!!! Most of us have more gray hair than they do and lots of grand children! We need more youngsters like them to carry on. I know they are excited about their opportunities as they look forward to lots of fun and many more great trips with their GWRRA family. We will see them on February 25th at the Couples Spring Fling.
Arkansas District Couples Coordinator
Thomas C. & Ramona B. Harrison
Chapter E - Hot Springs Village
Ramona was born in Spencer, West Virginia and grew up on a farm in Roane County located on Two Run road. Through the 6th grade, she attended a one room school house on Two Run with her brother and sister. The school was identical to those we have all seen with a pot belly stove in the middle of the room. Prior to starting the 7th grade, her family moved to Tornado, West Virginia so her father could better pursue his career at Union Carbide without the rigors of a horrible commute. Mona went on to Charleston Beauty college, worked in various salons, taught beauty school in Beckley, WV and went on to manage the Parkersburg Beauty college in Parkersburg, WV.
I was born in Berlin, Wisconsin and moved with the family to Junction City, Ohio before my first birthday. A year later we moved south of Lancaster, Ohio where I grew up with my two brothers at the Boy's Industrial School, an institution for delinquent boys where his father was first chaplain and then Asst Superintendent. I took his first "motorcycle" ride on my brother's Whizzer at age 12 and got my first motorcycle with newspaper money at age 13. I was attracted to motorcycling at an early age because my Grandfather Joseph Ryan was the first Factory Service Manager for Harley Davidson and drove his Harley Davidson sidecar outfit everywhere including vacation. He is now well represented in the HD museum in Milwaukee. Since our family lived in such an isolated area, a motorcycle was my constant source of entertainment and freedom and later gave me that means to drive 12 miles to work in Lancaster, Ohio when I was old enough to have a license. While living in the country, I rode constantly when not delivering newspapers, working at the grocery store or going to school. I have owned 26 different motorcycles and have ridden more than 750,000 miles the last 53 years.
I am a Vietnam Combat Vet who earned 8 ribbons and 5 medals, the most important being my marksmanship medal and Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Palm. Upon returning from the military, I attended Ohio State University on the GI bill and graduated in December 1973.
I was hired by DuPont and after training, was assigned as Resident Auditor for the State of West Virginia and resided in Parkersburg, WV. I judged a Miss America regional pageant in Texas and 7 local Miss America pageants in the state of Delaware. I met my wife through the Community Greeting Service lady and after dating for several months, we were married on Feb 15, 1975.
Much to my delight, I found out that she loves to ride. We bought a brand new 1975 4 cylinder Honda and had a ball riding the mountains of West Virginia and throughout the Midwest. We have ridden our entire 37 years of married life.
I finished a 30 year career with DuPont and retired at Consultant level earning numerous awards including Small Business Advocate of the Year for the State of Ohio for my community work. Ramona and I had two children, Marjorie Beth and Matthew, and 4 grandchildren, all of which live in Texas. The grandchildren range in age from 3 to 8 years of age and are the cutest on earth! If you don't believe that, we have pictures to prove it!!!
After a very lengthy and detailed 9 year search of America, we decided to retire to Hot Springs Village, Arkansas and have enjoyed 10 wonderful years of retirement.
We had ridden with several motorcycle groups but were not happy with their culture and the lack of safety demonstrated in their rides. I was immediately impressed with the discipline and fun shown during a guest ride with Chapter E. We were hooked on GWRRA!! While with DuPont, I did a great deal of work on Joint Ventures with the Japanese and learned to respect and deeply appreciate their management style which is very evident in the way GWRRA conducts itself. As a rider, I was becoming undisciplined with my riding and needed to increase my knowledge and awareness for the sake of both of our safety. GWRRA is the perfect venue for the senior rider since we need to make up for our reduced physical capabilities with our mind. This is why I volunteered for and have served as Chapter Educator for almost 2 years and regularly serve as a ride Road Captain and assist with other activities. I also make regular contributions to our Chapter's newsletter.
GWRRA encourages and offers many ways to raise our education and awareness while having fun. We look forward to many more years of serving and having fun with the group. As Chapter Couple, we plan to attend other chapter meetings in the District and represent Chapter E to the best of our ability!!!
Dave & Joni Barham
Chapter I - Stuttgart
Arkansas Chapter I in Stuttgart proudly introduces their Chapter Couple of the Year, David and Joni Barham. Chapter Director, Warren Morris made their appointment, acknowledging that the commitments they have made to their chapter and all of GWRRA have been phenomenal. They are charter members of Chapter I, have also served as Assistant Chapter Director, Chapter Treasurer, Arkansas District MAD Coordinator, Arkansas District Vendor Coordinator, District Public Relations Director and Region H Trainer.
After deciding that life needed to slow down a little, David gave up his job as Region Trainer, so there came the opportunity for Warren to give them the honor of being the very first Chapter Couple since their chapter began in 2003. Many of us have had the opportunity to learn more about our GWRRA organization through David and Joni's training classes and their invaluable support in anything that is asked of them.
On the personal side of life, David was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee and Joni, in Little Rock, Arkansas. They were married in 1984. Interesting places they have lived and traveled include Chattanooga, TN, California, South Carolina, Rota, Spain, Florida, Cedar Grove, New Jersey, Manahawkin, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. David and Joni have both traveled extensively in their lives.
They moved to Stuttgart, Arkansas when David's employment at Riceland Foods, Inc began, as Manager of Information Systems. In later years he accepted the position of Director of Corporate Training. Joni works at BancorpSouth as a Regional Computer Tech.
Their family includes the recent birth of their first grandchild, Sydney A. Barham, who is the daughter of their son, D. Edward Barham and wife, Jan. Sydney is two months old. (And add to that of course, their extensive Gold Wing family!)
Other interests and hobbies for David are hunting, fishing, ATV riding, travel, geocaching adventures, gadget collecting, reading and teaching others. Joni enjoys fishing, ATV riding, travel and reading. They also belong to several professional organizations pertaining to training and banking.
David and Joni both grew up riding motorcycles. Motorcycle life has been ongoing for David since owning his first bike, an Allstate 125 in 1957.
All through David's life he has always owned at least one bike. Too many to list here, however most were of the twin cruiser type. Once all the college bills were out of the way, they knew they could get the bike of their dreams, their new 2003 Illusion Blue Honda Gold Wing. They rode this bike for two and a half years before installing a 2005 CSC Trike Conversion. They named it "The Future" because that's what they were saving for when they bought it.
While providing the information to write this article, Joni said, "Other than this our life is pretty dull". Don't believe it, because not much could be dull around Joni and David. For those of us who know them well and love them to death, we are always having more fun when they are around to stir things up a little and put some life in the party!!
Their contribution to GWRRA has been outstanding. Last year at our 2006 District Rally, they were the recipients of the Arkansas Member of the Year Award. I know we will be seeing a lot more of them in the future, riding their dream, "THE FUTURE". We know they will enjoy being "Couple of the Year" and will fulfill their duties as ambassador from AR-I, just like they have done in all the roles they have taken in GWRRA.
David & Deborah Blees
Chapter - A Little Rock
David and Deborah Blees are in the "Spotlight" for Chapter A in Little Rock. CD's Bobby and Barbara Summerville say it wasn't a hard choice to make. They are always there any time help is needed and they love our GWRRA organization.
David and Deborah are both native Arkansans, he was born in Little Rock and she in Hot Springs. They now call Bryant, AR their home. They have been married for almost 25 years. David and Deb have three daughters, Tina, Stacey and Kristen, two granddaughters, Callie and Madison and 2 grandsons, Ryan and Matthew. Although David didn't come into their lives until the girls were 15, 12 and 8 years old, he has been a very good father to Deborah's daughters and ultimately a great "Pepaw" to their grandchildren.
David goes to work to support their newest life venture, "riding a Gold Wing and having fun with their GWRRA friends"! He works for the US Postal Service as a maintenance clerk. They say their goal in life is to retire and see the USA on the back of a Gold Wing. (What's up with this, everyone wants to retire to ride a Gold Wing!!!)
David spent nine years in the US Army as a Military Policeman. Three of those years were spent in the Republic of Panama in Central America and one year in Johnston Atoll, which is two miles long and Â¾ of a mile wide, and located 750 nautical miles southwest of Honolulu, Hawaii. They were also stationed in Fort Rucker, Alabama and Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. David was a staff sergeant when he left military service.
On to the motorcycle side of life, Deborah says she became interested in motorcycles when her ex-husband bought a barrel from the US Government and found parts for a 1937 Harley Davidson bike and sidecar in the barrel! We'll have to find out what became of that Harley?? (Just found out what happened to the Harley, after it was reassembled, it was sold for $10,000)
David was attending college in Little Rock and decided gas would be cheaper with a motorcycle. They have been riding on and off for about 20 years. They have owned various trail bikes, a Honda Sabre and a Yamaha 650. Now their prized possession is their Gold Wing.
They do have other interests aside from their GWRRA activities. David likes hunting, fishing and working on his Gold Wing. Deborah likes cross stitch, sewing and cross-word puzzles.
David and Deborah joined GWRRA in May of 2006. They started looking for a Gold Wing chapter that would be close to home and made a call to the Summerville's. They were having a Chapter ride that Saturday, so they joined them and the rest is history. They were asked if they would help out with the Chapter and a "yes" answer became the Chapter Treasurer position. They have been instrumental to the growth and activity of Chapter A. Their willing spirit of excitement keeps them very busy helping with anything that is asked of them.
They have attended Horizons Class. They were named their Chapter Couple of the Year. They have attended our Couple of the Year Seminar. Ever since joining Chapter A, they have been on the go, to as many chapter rallies and Gold Wing events as they could squeeze in. Deborah says when you get to know them, she is the nutty one and David is the quiet one, and by the way, in their chapter he is known as "Grumpy". I have a Grumpy too. They are only BIG TEDDY BEARS in reality!!
We are very glad to have David and Deborah as part of our GWRRA family. They will be one of our Couples in the Selection at our Spring Fling. Only more fun and friendship will follow them on their ride with this organization!
Dennis & Kathey Blankenship
Chapter C - Cabot
AR Chapter C in Cabot shines the spotlight on Dennis & Kathey Blankenship, as their 2006-07 Chapter Couple of the Year. When CD's Chris & Pam DePriest approached them about this quite a while back, their answer was a big NO! After much persuasion by Chris, Pam and Yours Truly, they agreed to do what they had already been doing anyway, which was to spread the word about GWRRA and help their chapter in any way they could. So after a while they found themselves wearing their patches proudly! ( Dennis says my real name is the Headhunter)
Their personal history goes like this; Dennis was born in Vallejo, California. Kathey was born in Independence, Missouri. They met at a GWRRA Arkansas Rally in Mountain Home, AR in 1997. They were both married to someone else at the time. Dennis has been a member of GWRRA since 1984. After joining, he was asked to take on the responsibility of vendor coordinator for 1985 Region Rally in Hot Springs. That year he also recruited a very special couple, who are very dear to this organization, Bud & Freida Price, In 1997-98 he served as State Coordinator. Kathy was Assistant State Director at that same time. Dennis and Kathey both went through divorces at that time. Bringing their relationship closer, they remained friends through both divorces and the rest is history.
Between them they have five children. Dennis has a daughter, Pam, married with two children, Mackenzie (11) and Macy (5). Their daddy, Ken is in the Navy and has served two terms in Iraq. His son, Paul is single. Kathey has a son, Troy, who is married with 2 children, Daniele (16) and Ty (7). She also has two daughters, Karen, who is married and has one child, Kaleb (1) and Wendy is married, and has the newest addition to the family, Sophia Marie, who was born in October.
Dennis and Kathey have recently made their long awaited move into their brand new home, so they can enjoy another chapter of their life. In the meantime they are seen quite often on their 2001 Yellow Gold Wing that they converted to a trike, (Thanks you, Arkansas Trike Center). Dennis has been riding for 42 years and has had at least 15 different motorcycles. (Nine have been Gold Wings) They have had two during their marriage.
After Dennis & Kathey were married they served as Assistant Chapter Directors for Chapter A in Little Rock, Also have participated with Chapter L in Conway and are now proud members of Chapter C in Cabot. Needless to say, they have traveled many miles over the years, too many trips to remember. They love to travel on their trike and look forward to many more years of riding. They have taken many Rider Ed courses. Their favorite place to eat is a good steak house.
We are glad to have them on board as ambassadors for the good of AR GWRRA. We look forward to seeing them at our upcoming Spring Fling.
Don & Denise Provence
Chapter H - Batesville
Batesville, Arkansas Chapter H presents Don & Denise Provence as their 2006-07 Couple of the Year. They have helped their chapter in many ways over the last year, especially when CD Marty Melton bought a business that kept him busy virtually 7 days a week. Don and Denise were already his Assistant Directors. They stepped up early into their role as Chapter Directors just this past month to relieve Marty with some of his workload. We thank them for their hard work. They had already been honored as Chapter Couple this past summer.
Don and Denise have been married since 1979 and have always resided in Batesville . Don was born in Arkansas and Denise in California. Don and Denise have both been at their jobs since 1978. Don is a technician for Suddenlink Communications. Denise is customer service manager for White Roges. She is also attending college, studying accounting.
As far as motorcycles, Don has been interested since he was old enough to notice them, had his first bike at the age of 12 years and has owned 14 bikes. Denise has had 5 bikes of her own since they have been married. The bike they ride together is their 05 Gray 1800 Gold Wing. They have their own personal bikes, Don has a Yamaha FZ6 and Denise has a XT 225 that has been customized into a supermotto bike! Wow, super Denise!!
To go along with all the motorcycle excitement, they also belong to the River City Cruisers Car Club, where they participate with their own 1977 Pontiac Grand Am. They are also interest owners of a modified dirt race car. They have enjoyed attending NASCAR races over the years at Talladega, Texas, Memphis, Richmond, Rockingham and Darlington. They have also been special guests of Bill Davis Racing at some of them. Although they don't ride their Gold Wing as fast as their other modes of transportation, they have traveled to the AMA Superbike Races in Birmingham, Alabama on their Gold Wing. They also enjoyed Honda Hoot in Knoxville, Tennessee. They are looking forward to many more rallies and good times in the upcoming years.
They joined GWRRA in April of 2005. They say they must admit, when taking everything into consideration, they have the most fun when they are riding motorcycles. They say that their GWRRA friends are becoming some of their closest friends. Why does that not surprise us?
Don and Denise are joining us at the Spring Fling in February and we expect to see a lot more of them in the future. They are already great ambassadors for our Arkansas Gold Wing family!
Steve & Kandi Johnson
Chapter E - Hot Springs
Steve and Kandi Johnson are in the "Spotlight" as Chapter E, Hot Springs, Arkansas' Couple of the Year. Steve was born in Orofino, Indiana and Kandi in San Francisco, California. Their family includes two children, Jason & Amber and three grandchildren, Ryan (14), Brenda (7) & Alek (3).
Steve and Kandi, like most of us, were busy for years with a career and family. They say that motorcycles were a luxury that had to wait for a while. Then in 2001, as his retirement years were approaching, they contemplated selling their Bed & Breakfast, and slowing down. (Steve is a retired Air Traffic Control Supervisor.) Kandi had suffered with multiple sclerosis (MS) for several years, but was still fairly mobile, the kids were raised, and it was time. They purchased their Valkyrie and started riding again. At first it was just short trips to get the feel of things, and to judge the impact of her impairment on their ability to share the fun.
In May of 2002, just two months after Steve's retirement, Kandi suffered a catastrophic stroke. Quoting Steve's own words, "I was told to call the kids and prepare myself, but nobody told Kandi. Then we were told she'd never be functional at any level, but nobody told Kandi. Next they said she'd need nursing home care and be bedridden, but again, nobody told Kandi.
In June of 2003, they relocated to Hot Springs Village, Arkansas. With the help of their son, they tried to start their retirement life over again. A wheelchair was Kandi's only way to get around. Then in September while Steve was out for a short caregiver break on the Valkyrie, something happened that would change their life dramatically. Steve ran into a Gold Wing rider. It was Dan Gruben, Director for Chapter E in Hot Springs. Dan invited him to a Chapter meeting. Steve explained their situation, they exchanged e-mail addresses and he rode away.
Steve was able to make a few rides with the Chapter that fall, but there was no way to bring Kandi along. She made her first Chapter meeting in their van and met the folks who were soon to have such an impact on their life. After attending a progressive dinner ride, with Kandi escorted to each house in the van by their son, Jason and Steve on his bike, things were set in motion for Kandi to be able to ride again. She said she had a great time, but she wanted to ride with Steve.
After much discussion and research on how to achieve their goal, the decision was made that a sidecar would be their answer. They made the trip to Heartland Honda, where they had found a rig with a sidecar, so they could take Kandi on a ride. She loved it! Then they had to come up with a way to transport her in and out of the sidecar. Steve purchased a hydraulic patient lift for home use. Next they needed a trailer to carry the lift.
At our GWRRA District Rally that May, Steve was given the business card of longtime GWRRA member, Eddie Spears. Steve called Eddie, he remembered seeing them at the rally. He happened to have a trailer with the right dimensions. Eddie said "Come on down and try it out". The trailer worked! Problem solved!
After many, many miles of riding, Steve and Kandi are still enjoying the time spent with their very special GWRRA friends. It has changed everything for them. They don't ride fast, but they ride together. Steve says that his biggest problem now is that he can't keep her off the bike; she wants to take it everywhere. They say this could never have happened without their friends in GWRRA, Chapter AR-E and the folks at Heartland Honda, who worked so hard to make this work for them!
Steve says it does take extra time and effort to get Kandi ready to ride, but "the way her face lights up when I mention riding is worth it"!
We are so happy to have then as part of our GWRRA family. Steve has even been known to share his singing talent with us at several GWRRA functions. (In case you are wondering, Steve does have a talent agent. Her name is Carol Bass with AR-E. He has even made his first CD and it's a great one.)
We will see Steve and Kandi in February at our Spring Fling. Come join us!!
Robert & Vicky Humphrey
Chapter L - Conway
Our next Chapter Couple in the Spotlight is Robert and Vicki Humphrey, from Chapter L in Conway. Their appointment by CD's Frank & Debbie Likert was an easy one, they say that Robert and Vicki have done just about everything for their chapter. They have served as Chapter Directors, Asst Chapter Directors, Historian, Toad Suck Rally Coordinator, and now as Newsletter Editor.
Robert was born in Mt. Clemons, MI. Vicki was born in Little Rock, AR.
They have been married since 1988 and they reside in Cabot, AR. Their family includes a son, Stephen and wife, Contessa and 3 year old, Spencer. Then comes daughter, Tina and her husband, Nick and last but not least, Chad and wife, Jenny.
They have jobs that interfere with their fun on the Wing. Robert works for Moore Heating & Air in Cabot and Vicki works for NLR Code Enforcement in North Little Rock. Their other interests include NASCAR for Robert and Vicki loves music. And they both love GWRRA.
Robert has loved motorcycles all his life, started riding when he was 12. Vicki didn't get interested until she married Robert. They own a 1989, 1500 Gold Wing. They have both attended Rider Education courses and are very active in their chapter.
As for rides they have made, there have been many! But most recently their favorites have been a 10 day, 4000 mile trip in May of 2006 out west to California, Nevada, and Utah. They went Whitewater rafting in Colorado down the Arkansas River. In the summer of 2007 they plan to ride to Maine, Canada and Niagara Falls.
They plan to continue having fun on their Gold Wing and with all their GWRRA friends for a long time to come. Thanks Vicki and Robert for all you do for your Chapter and GWRRA.
Don & Pam Redinger
Chapter B - Springdale
Chapter B in Springdale, AR is proud to present Don & Pam Redinger, they're the Chapter Couple of the Year for 2006-2007. They are very active members in their chapter and really add a lot of fun and enjoyment anytime you see them out and about!
Don was born in Shattuck, Oklahoma and Pam in Clinton, Oklahoma; but are now proud Arkansans.
Don & Pam wanted a very special wedding when they were married and SPECIAL it was!! They had an UNDERWATER wedding in Key Largo, Florida. And then went on to honeymoon in Bimini! A tiny island in the Bahamas, Bimini is just 7 miles long and barely 700 feet wide at it's widest point. What a dream! (Would love to see pictures, if they had an underwater photographer!!)
Then came family life. They have four children and four grandchildren. They are: Son, Michael and daughter-in-law Heidi, and children, Haven, (12), Rylee, (6), and Taylen, (3). Son, Cory and daughter-in-law, Bobby, and one child, Lany, (3). Daughter, Nicole and Son-in-law Landon Highfill. And last but not least, Daughter, Kelly Marcy. They do share some of their time with the little ones when they aren't riding their Gold Wing.
Don says he has liked motorcycles all of his life. He has been riding for 44 years. Got his license when he was 14 years old. He now has a 2005 GL 1800 and Pam rides a 2005 Suzuki Burgman. Don joined GWRRA in 1994 and Pam followed a little later in 1998. They have been having fun ever since. Along with all the riding that they do, they are also Assistant Chapter Directors to CD's Mike and Ruthie Erskin in our Springdale Chapter B. They are also Newsletter Editor and Couple of the Year. Busy, Busy!
We have seen them everywhere on the road. The reason they joined GWRRA was to have someone to ride with and to form those lifelong friendships. They are doing just that! They are also involved in the Rider Ed program and have been to the training classes offered at our District Rider Ed Weekend.
Past motorcycle trips they have enjoyed include Wing Ding in Greenville, SC, then traveled the coast into Florida and came home along the Gulf Coast through Louisiana. They went to Wing Ding in Springfield in 1999, Grapevine in 2004 and Nashville in 2006. They would love to travel to Honda Hoot next year.
When they are not enjoying their Gold Wing, they have jobs that interfere with their fun. Don Works for Springdale Tractor Co in set up and delivery. Pam is office manager for Lowell Collision Services. Other hobbies they enjoy when they're not wingin it are SCUBA diving and jet skiing. (Don was a SCUBA instructor for 13 years and they met when Don taught Pam to scuba dive. Therefore, an Underwater Wedding was a must!!) Also, Pam loves sewing and embroidery.
Don & Pam are faithful GWRRA members and bring a lot to our organization for all they volunteer to do. We are glad to have them on board as a Chapter Couple spreading the word about fun, safety and knowledge!!
Arkansas District Couple 2004 - 2005
Garry & Phyllis Floyd
Our first "Spotlight Article" will shine on our Arkansas District Couple, Garry and Phyllis Floyd. They are from Van Buren, Arkansas, where they have lived for the past 30 years. They have been married for 33 years and have three sons, one daughter, three grandsons and six grand daughters. We can't forget their Dachshund, Sassee and the Cockatiel, Baby. Their hobbies include fishing, art, pottery, stained glass and traveling to new places and meeting new people. They have also become Pine Car Derby Racers, although they haven't won any races yet, they do have a lot of fun participating. They love to ride motorcycles and have been riding for 32 safe years.
It was the summer of 1973. Garry had always wanted a motorcycle but couldn't afford one. His father owned a Honda 350-4. His brother-in-law wanted to ride, so he purchased a used 250 Yamaha. It had a suicide clutch and the brakes didn't work well. He learned how to ride in his backyard. On his second time around the yard the clutch stuck, the brakes didn't work and he went down in the yard. He immediately called Garry and asked if he wanted to buy a motorcycle. Garry paid $75 for that Yamaha and was now the proud owner of his own motorcycle. It turned out to be a good deal for both of them since both of their cars quit running in the fall of that year, leaving them with the 250 Yamaha as their only transportation to work. Even in those days they were safe riders, always wearing their helmets and proper riding clothes. This was the start of Garry & Phyllis' motorcycle days. They have owned one ever since then.
They began their journey with GWRRA by attending the 2002 Drill Team competition in Springfield, Missouri. Then began attending Chapter X meetings in Clarksville. They traveled by car to all GWRRA Chapter and District activities until they purchased their first Gold Wing in December of 2002. Then they joined GWRRA. And participate, they have. They have attended ten District Rallies, two Region Rallies and two Wing Dings. They have participated in all the following: Best Dressed Couple, Best Dressed Chapter and Theme Dress, Talent shows, Mascot Competition and the Couple of the Year Selection in 2004, where they were chosen as the Arkansas District Couple of the Year.
They have served as Assistant Chapter Directors, District Webmasters and Assistant District Directors. They have been judges in the Best Dressed and COY Selection in both Oklahoma and Kansas District Rallies. They also conducted the "Not So Newlywed Game" and Couples Seminar at the Arkansas District Rally in 2005. This past February they attended Tennessee's Cupids Caper 2005. This rally was the inspiration for our District Directors, Dale and Susan Wingrove, to plan our First Annual Spring Fling and Couple of the Year Selection.
Garry and Phyllis have been very busy working on the Couples Program for Arkansas They have visited 11 of our 14 Arkansas GWRRA Chapters and plan to visit the others by the end of the year. We currently have 10 active Chapter Couples and are hopeful of having all the Chapters represented soon. As our District Couple, Garry and Phyllis have attended all five District Rallies and the International Couple of the Year Selection 2005 Wing Ding XXVII at Fort Wayne, Indiana.
They have taken many safety classes since joining GWRRA They are currently Level 3 in Safety (Level 4 pending.) They have completed CPR and First Aid, Trike ERC Course, Co-Rider Seminar, Road Captain Course, Motorcycle Riding for the Mature Rider and the GWRRA Horizons Program.
The following is a message from Garry and Phyllis:
As most of you know, we want to be your Region H Couple of the Year because we are so passionate and dedicated to the growth of the Couple of the Year program. It has been an honor to serve as Chapter and District Couple of the Year. We've worked very hard toward having 100% of our Arkansas Chapters with an active Couple of the Year and have been instrumental in implementing the changes to the Arkansas District Couple of the Year Program. We are very dedicated to the GWRRA slogan "FRIENDS FOR FUN, SAFETY AND KNOWLEDGE", as you can tell by the number of safety and educational courses and events that we've attended. Every time we go to a GWRRA event we see old friends, and make new FRIENDS, while having as much FUN as possible. We promote SAFETY by setting an example by the way we dress, the actions we take when we ride, telling others about riding safely and promoting Rider Education. We feel that the KNOWLEDGE we have gained in GWRRA and the information we will learn in the future, will greatly benefit us, everyone we know and NEW FRIENDS we meet through our association with GWRRA.
We do thank Garry & Phyllis for all their hard work and dedication. They are great people. They enjoy all the things that they do to promote the good of GWRRA. After all, it's really about FRIENDS, FUN and SAFETY!!
Arkansas District Couples Coordinator