Riding for a cause; Bikers unite to help a burn victim

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 4, 2002

A passion for motorcycles and the desire to help out someone in need brought together a 12-year-old burn victim and local motorcycle enthusiasts Saturday for the second annual Laidback Poker Run.

The registration fees from the motorcycle ride raised money for local burn victim, Scotty Vickers. The event began at 1 p.m. at the Laidback Bar in Hanging Rock.

&uot;He has loved motorcycles since he was a baby,&uot; Fred Sammons, Scotty’s step-father, said. &uot;He is tickled to death about it.&uot;

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His mother, Elizabeth Vickers, said her son used to get in trouble in class for mimicking the sound of a motorcycle.

&uot;I like it when they ride wheelies,&uot; Scotty said.

The bikers rode on Second Street through Ironton and then took State Route 141, stopping by Rock Hill Elementary No. 2 to meet with Vickers and his family.

&uot;We wanted to find someone who needs the help, someone around here,&uot; Pat Boggs, Laidback Bar owner and co-organizer, said. &uot;A lot of people do stuff to help people away from here. We wanted to do something for someone local.&uot;

Last year, they helped a child with cancer and decided to help Vickers this year because a friend of Boggs, Carl Duncan, knew the family could use some help.

Mark Howard of Ironton was one of approximately 175 bikers who participated in the poker run.

&uot;It’s extremely important to take care of local people,&uot; he said. &uot;Everyone donates to charities and it’s nice to do something and know where the money’s going.&uot;

Sammons said the family appreciates the support and they are very thankful for all the help.

&uot;It feels great to realize that you have some friends,&uot; he said. &uot;This is an expense we never thought would occur.&uot;

The ride was called a poker run because everyone rolled dice and the lowest score won a trophy. They also had a 50/50 drawing. Everyone purchased tickets and the funds were split between the winning ticket holder and Vickers’ family.

Scotty was burned on April 18 while using gasoline to light some paper and an old pair of jeans, his mother, said.

&uot;He is looking a lot better and is feeling pretty good,&uot; Sammons said. &uot;It is really great that he was at the Shriner’s Hospital in Cincinnati because if he had been in another (hospital) we would have lost him. We still thought we had lost him for awhile.&uot;

Elizabeth Vickers added her son woke up early Saturday for the poker run.

&uot;It was the first time since he’s been back from the hospital,&uot; she said of his early rising.

The ride was originally scheduled for July 13, but was postponed due to rain. Boggs said he wasn’t about to call off the event, though.

&uot;There are families out here that need help, and that’s what we’re all about,&uot; he said.

As Scotty and his family were preparing to go to the Laidback, he told his mother what he was looking forward to the most.

&uot;I might go down there and kiss a few good-looking ladies,&uot; he said.

All his mother could do was laugh.

Howie McCormick contributed to this report. MIchael Caldwell/The Ironton Tribune