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Sheppard Air Force Base

06/19/2017 | News release | Distributed by Public on 06/19/2017 18:37

Sheppard motorcycle awareness ride

SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --
Chapter 54 of the Green Knights Military Motorcycle Club led a Motorcycle Awareness Ride through Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas, June 19, 2017.

All motorcyclists from Team Sheppard were invited to participate in the ride to demonstrate the importance of safe driving between all motor vehicles.

'We're going to make some noise out there,' said Richard Chamberlain, GKMMC Chapter 54 president. 'If we can get one person driving a car to see us and be more aware of motorcycles on the road, the ride will be well worth it.'

The GKMMC mission is safety and mentorship. The group often pairs up with Sheppard's safety office to educate new riders and ultimately prevent accidents.

Unfortunately, accidents do happen. Nearly 5,000 people were killed riding motorcycles on U.S. roads in 2015.

'Roughly a year ago I was hit by a driver and his explanation was that he didn't see me,' said Tech Sgt. Alex Aguayo-Virella, GKMMC safety director and 361st Training Squadron aircraft metals technology instructor. 'The more awareness that we have, the less chance of an accident, the less chance of an injury and the less chance of fatality.'

As someone trusted to educate Airmen on a daily basis, Aguayo-Virella knows that situational awareness is key when operating all types of machinery, motorcycles and cars included.

'I teach my students that in order to prevent accidents in the shop, you must have situational awareness and this is true for driving as well,' Aguayo-Virella said.

A driver's license is a privilege earned by demonstrating your ability to navigate the road safely. Whether you drive a car, motorcycle, or any other vehicle, we are all responsible for being aware of our surroundings.

'Look twice, use your signals and don't rely only on your mirrors,' said Chamberlain. 'Glance over your shoulder when changing lanes because that alone could save a life.'

To view more photos from the ride, click here.