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A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

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A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by BikerGeek »

I’m gonna start this Ride Report by saying we didn’t ride. We drove. But, the reason for this Ride Report isn’t necessarily to share the trip on two wheels, but the destination and a few pictures. And the destination for this … uh … Destination Report, was the Memorial / Celebration of Life for our very own, Jason Williams, AKA jwilly. And if you’re not in the loop on why this thread exists, look around.

So, for the first EVER FJR Destination Report, let’s begin.

Thursday, June 9, 2022.
After work, Sooze and I loaded up and headed out from our abode in Marysville, Ohio, to a hotel in Lexington, Kentucky. Nothing real interesting to show ya, but the Outback Steakhouse adjacent to our hotel did have cold beer on tap.
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The steak was OK-ish. A tad more than medium-rare but it was still decently tender. #firstworldproblems #foodpornwars
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Friday, June 10, 2022.
Knowing what had happened, and what was to come, I had not been sleeping worth a hoot for a few weeks, and the previous night was not different, but there was anticipation this morning, knowing we were going to see great people that we get to see nowhere near as often as we would like to.

We found a breakfast spot close to the hotel. The service was great as was the food. Mmmm… Bacon, eggs, English muffin, and hash browns – and they even asked if you wanted your bacon chewy or crispy! Seriously – if you’re gonna have bacon … chewy bacon – on PURPOSE? Maybe it’s a Kentucky thang. I got nothin’. But our food was excellent.
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Nothing out of the ordinary to say aboot the drive from Lexington to Woodstock, Georgia, really. I had scoped out a place for libations close to the hotel and the place did not disappoint! Plenty of choices and a super-friendly staff.

Once at the Microtel in Woodstock, Georgia, AKA “JWilly Celebration Central,” it was time to start celebrating our friend. This was my first, “To JWilly!” of many.
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The parking lot at JWilly Celebration Central was pretty much the same as at any other FJR gathering – some libations, hugs (prolly more than normal, which was to be expected and awesome), and plenty of stories of how we met jwilly, things jwilly did / said… And a few leaky eyes.

Time for some pictures. I’ll do my best to say who is who.

Kornbread, Powerman, Spininprop, Griff, Wheaton, and Burnspot.
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Powerman, Kornbread, Spininprop.
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El Toro Joe, Kornbread, Powerman, Spininprop, Griff, Sooze, Wheaton, Burnspot.
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Folks continued to arrive – CraigRegs rolled in from Iowa. Here we have (foreground) Sooze, Griff, CraigRegs, and Wheaton.
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Sooze, Burnspot, and El Toro Joe.
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Griff, Wheaton, and CraigRegs.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by BikerGeek »

Friday, June 10, 2022, continued.

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Patrick rolled in from northern Michigan.
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FJRFarrier rolled in and she don’t mess around.
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Chuck and Dirk.
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Spininprop and Patrick.
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A few of the bikes in the parking lot.
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Tyler and bugnatr made it in from California. Some eyes may have gotten moist again.
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More to come….
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by Tyler »

BikerGeek wrote: Tue Jun 14, 2022 11:46 pmSome eyes may have gotten moist again.
May have?? ;)
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by LKLD »

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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by BikerGeek »

Friday, June 10, 2022, continued.

One common theme I heard from several people in the parking lot: MORE PICTURES! So, here we are.

Is Griff picking his nose? You decide. Besides, who am I to judge?
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Me, Gary, Tyler.
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Sooze, bugnatr, me.
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Kornbread, Sooze, me.
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I’m not sure if Tyler is surprised or pissed but that reallllly looks like a "mom face" if you ask me. Which you didn't.
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LKLD (foreground) and his (much) better half (background talking with Chuck) were there.
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Powerman, Mrs. LKLD, BkerChuck.
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LKLD & Tyler.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by BikerGeek »

Dirk, Dougie-bear, and Scott.
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Lots of folks were interested in Julie’s tools of her trade. And her truck’s tailgate made for a passable bar.
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El Toro Joe, Sooze, FJRVFR.
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Team LKLD chatting with Tyler.
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Sooze, mipjk, FJRVFR, El Toro Joe.
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It is possible – yeah, only POSSIBLE – that Joe made a helluva dent in a bottle of bourbon. Again – POSSIBLE. And there MAY be video, but he’s paying me well to make sure you never see it.
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Powerman, El Toro Joe, Dirk, FJRFarrier.
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Me and bugnatr again.
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Powerman’s shirt was rather appropriate if you ask me. Which you didn’t.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by BikerGeek »

FJRFarrier and LKLD.
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Tyler, VAbikebreaker, Burnspot.
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While it may look like we were all just drinking and having a grand old time, the underlying reason why were all there was never lost on any of us. From time to time a somber moment would come along but we did enjoy each other’s company. There were plenty of random hugs, “I love you”s and whatnot.


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Mipjk is pretty quick to whip out the finger.
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And that’s it for Friday, picture-wise. For those who were there: who put Joe to bed? Asking for a friend.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by wheatonFJR »

Thanks Geek. I retired early, because I haven’t a good nights sleep since, well, you know. I did stay up to see Doug and Tyler enter the parking lot. Something about seeing FJR friends and making new ones that helps steady your boat when the big waves hit you.

I want to say thank you to those that listened to me patiently this weekend. Frankly, it’s been a big trauma for me, as it has for many, and it’s helped me through this ordeal.

Thank y’all for welcoming Louanne, y’all were good. She did ask who was the guy with the shirts and who was the guy with the tats…I said, never mind the exterior, these guys are golden.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by Burnspot »

BikerGeek wrote: Wed Jun 15, 2022 5:56 pm For those who were there: who put Joe to bed? Asking for a friend.
This will probably wind up being one of life's unsolved mysteries as we saw Joe off at the front door, ready for a 2015-grade photo that, unfortunately, never presented itself. Even Joe doesn't remember how he got into his room and into bed. ;)
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by FJRPittsburgh »

Thanks Andy. I wish I could've been there. You made me feel like I was. Much appreciated....
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by BikerGeek »

Saturday, June 10, 2022.

We slept in a bit and eventually wandered downstairs for a cup of coffee. El Toro Joe’s first comment to me: “Did you f@$king roofie me last night?” I laughed.

We decided to hop in the car and go into town to find some place for lunch / brunch. Downtown Woodstock was one busy little spot. No place to park, people everywhere (which is good to see, if you ask me, which you didn’t), and there was gonna be a free Sister Hazel concert that night. We bailed on finding something in town and went to Waffle House. No pictures. Deal with it.

It was a nice, warm day. Eventually some folks were hanging out in the parking lot so we went out to chat for a bit.
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Eventually danh600 (red shirt) rolled in from Florida and Joe was swearing that he was going to be on his best behavior that night. Altitude sickness, perhaps? Not that I’m one to judge, of course.
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Roadrunner was rockin’ the shorts and riding boots look. Several comments were made that he needed plaid shorts like a certain someone.
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FYB, Burnspot, and others had gone in to town and went to the Semper Fi Bar & Grille. FYB was the person who called me to let me know aboot Jason.
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Chivvalry rolled in to the parking lot. Nothing quite like backing up your bike with an audience.
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And the Cajun Crew arrived from … uh … Cajun country. Hppants did not disappoint.
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I don’t think he’d even been drinking yet.
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Before long, it was time to get ready.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by wheatonFJR »

Tasteful.
“There’s no better therapy than a ride.” -petey

There are some awfully good people here at FJRiders! Jwilly's audacious promise!
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by BikerGeek »

Some got gussied up a bit, others donned riding gear.
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Nate rolled in to the hotel parking lot as well.
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The bikes left en masse. The cages followed.
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All told, there were 20 bikes there, mostly FJRs.
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I was kinda wondering what the reaction would be once the bikes rolled in. Jason’s oldest, Jacob (definitely NO paternity test needed!), and others who witnessed the bikes come in, were very appreciative of all who rode in – they loved seeing the bikes roll in together. There were some more moist eyes.

While we were there, additional FJR family rolled in: Fencer and his better half, Gerald and Brenda, Wayne and Brandon rolled in (after leaving Michigan at 3:00 am!), Uncle Hud, Lisa, Jim & Iris, Turk, Josh, 1911, Bill Lumberg and his better half…. For those who wanted to be there and couldn’t make it, our FJR family was well represented.

I didn’t wanna be weird and take a bunch of pictures during all this. As you would expect, there were a lot of laughs and a lot of tears. BUT, I did sneak one picture of Tyler, Fencer’s better half, and Fencer, all sitting in the rocking chairs.
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Once the very somber activities concluded, the group trickled back to the hotel. One thing was for sure: I was ready for a damned beer.

Now, I’ve got to admit something. There were a couple of our FJR family there who I had not met in person that I had been wanting to actually meet for years. I finally met ‘em – Redfish and Pops. Now, one thing that I’ve read aboot Redfish is that he is physically incapable of smiling. I can see why people would think that – I mean, just LOOK at the poor bastard.
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BUT, I present you with photographic proof that yes, indeed, Redfish is capable of smiling. Although, since that picture is kinda blurry on his face …. Is Redfish actually Bigfoot? I dunno. Hard to say for sure.
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It was truly great to finally meet these two, and I enjoyed hanging out with them for a bit just chit-chatting.
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In the parking lot, it was a mix of somberness and closure that Jason’s memorial was complete. Once again, there were a lot of toasts to Jason and spontaneous hugs here and there.


Hard to tell for sure what Redfish is telling Wayne but, if I were to guess, it’s gotta be a line of BS.
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Spininprop, Hppants, and Nate chatting a bit.
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Last edited by BikerGeek on Fri Jun 17, 2022 9:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by BikerGeek »

It was great seeing my old buddy Turk, especially since he and his better half went through some stuff recently.
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Sooze, Ken (Chivvalry), Gerald & Brenda.
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At one point, we were joined by some lacrosse coaches. They were kinda entertaining and I would not be surprised if they were entertained by us.
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This just never gets old.
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In our FJR family, we know how to put the ‘fun’ in dysfunctional.
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Burnspot wearing his FYB shirt while standing next to FYB.
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Hppants, Tyler, and CraigRegs.
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I mentioned earlier that there was interest in Julie’s tools of her trade. ‘Pants was VERY interested.
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More of Julie’s tools. Somehow, by some miracle, nobody actually grabbed any of these and started tossing ‘em. I was waiting for it but it didn’t happen.
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Redfish, Pops, FYB, me, Hppants.
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Me, mipjk, Sooze.
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Sonya and her daughters came to the hotel as well. There were still a lot of emotions and a few moist eyes.

A little bit of this was passed around.
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A bourbon toast to Jason.
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On behalf of our FJR family, Tyler made a presentation to Sonya.
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Group shot by the pool.
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I’ll wrap this up with two pictures that make me smile but for different reasons.

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Sunday, June 11, 2022.
Got up and drove home.

The end.

For anyone else who was there and has pictures to share but don’t wanna create a new post, please feel free to add ‘em to this one.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by Redfish »

Andy, thank you for doing this. You just made my eyes leak again.

As I told you and Sooze, I have been wanting to meet the two of you for a very long time. This gathering was for a very sad reason but it hammered home the Goodness of the FJR collective.

I am Very Careful to never let any pics of me smiling reach the public eye. Only for a very select few have I ever let my guard slip. Julie/Farrier, Tyler and now you actually made it happen. Obviously I was in some emotional turmoil due to the circumstances that brought us all together.

Pop was very, very emotional as we drove away that night. He feels like the FJR family is much better than his real family...and he is right. You guys are The Very Best.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by Festus »

Apparently the pollen is way up in my office this morning.

What an incredible way to respect Jason. Well done.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by dcarver »

Well done Andy.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by FJRPittsburgh »

Thanks again Andy. You captured the memorial well. I think Jason would have approved.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by Bugnatr »

Thank you for using the forum handles Geek, I'm still learning the names to the new folks I met. And thanks to those who were able to make to the memorial for Jason. I'm really glad I was able to make the trip and those who spoke at the service were special indeed.
I agree with Andrew's pop, the people here are the best and I have no doubt Jason would have approved.
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Re: A Destination Report: JWilly's Memorial / Celebration of Life

Post by Hppants »

Enjoyed this report very much.

Seeing everyone happy (whether we smiled for the camera or not) affirms that we did what Jwilly would have wanted. Meeting his family made it abundantly clear to me that Jwilly was the kind of man that was impossible to shop for because he had everything. I man like that needs only one gift - for you to celebrate your life with him, lay your burdens down, and be happy.

This is why we are so close. We are all the same way. Our greatest joy is enjoying each other. It's raw, sincere, and beautiful; and we all know it all to well.

I went to Woodstock for Jason and for Sonya. But selfishly, I went there for myself too.

Right on, Geek!
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