Nearly 350 people gathered at Silver Lake Lanes in Scandinavia to participate in the Dylan Thorne Memorial Ride.
They were riding in remembrance of a young life lost to the negligence of an alleged drunk driver.
“As many of you know, Dylan was killed by a drunk driver two years ago yesterday,” said Don Aasen. “This ride was created to remember Dylan and to raise awareness of the horrible consequences of drinking and driving.”
“Look at this turn out,” said Tim Thorne, father of Dylan. “This support is awesome. All these people coming together and there are so many new faces. I’m so grateful.”
“I cannot believe there are this many people,” said Derek Thorne, brother of the victim. “No more people need to be dying.”
Some of those in attendance, have suffered their own loses.
“I never knew Dylan,” said Scott Jeffers. “I’m a photographer from Milwaukee and came across the crash site on one of my rides through the area. When I saw a large group of young people gathered around that cross, I stopped to take a picture, but I couldn’t do it.”
Jeffers said his own brother was killed by a drunk driver.
“I saw the event on Facebook,” said Jeana Hale. “So I sent a message to see if I could help. They told me to come on down and I helped with registration today.”
Hale recalled how many years ago, a friend of her niece had been killed by a drunk driver as well.
“If drunk drivers only killed themselves that would be one thing, but they are killing other people,” she said. “No one needs to lose their kid.”
As part of the event, a 2014 FXDB Dyna Street Bob, supplied by Harley Davidson of Appleton, was raffled off. Kevin Brockman, of Phelps, was the winner.
“I cannot imagine going through anything like this,” said Terry Doughty, who owns the business. “I am amazed at how this community is so involved and supporting.”
Proceeds from the event will be used to build locker rooms at Thunderbird Field in Scandinavia.
“Shortly after Dylan’s passing Tim and Liz (Thorne) contacted me and said they wanted to meet with me about an idea they had for a memorial in Dylan’s name,” said I-S Football Coach Scott Erickson. “When we met they said they wanted to raise money to build locker rooms for the game field, all I could say was wow!”
“This is something we have talked about and dreamed about since the field was built and now it is going to become a reality,” he said. “The addition of locker rooms will allow our players not only a place to change and shower but will give them a place to go at half time.”
Football was near and dear to Dylan’s heart.
“Tim and Liz are showing us all how to be strong when a tragedy happens,” said Erickson. “Dylan was a part of our football family; we all lost someone special that day. Seeing his name on that locker room will remind every player that enters it just how special he was and that his football family will never forget him.”