Motorcycle Missions X J&P Cycles
The connection found between a man and a motorcycle is unusual. There are similarities that the human eyes miss at each glance. This connection is one that is rarely seen but frequently felt. From two wheels to two eyes, we begin our lives as a frame. A perfect, flawless, sinless, frame. Free from scrapes or wounds, free from scuffs, free from modifications, bare, that is it, just a frame, a skeleton. With age and maturity comes growth, that growth becomes the frame we build on. However, some sacrifice themselves to be picked to pieces, to return to their original state, that frame. Tested, broken down, and stripped of what they spent their whole lives knowing and becoming. They choose to be rebuilt into something new, a hero, a warrior, a machine.
In September 2018 J&P Cycles partnered with Motorcycle Missions, Krystal Hess, Chris Moos, and six brave veterans to reimagine a Ducati Scrambler. These veterans bonded over stories from basic, locations of deployment and job title. They each touched on how life in the Military affected their mindset, their way of life, and their family. Entering the military is brutal, your mind becomes altered, you turn yourself into a weapon, a tool for our country. What people don’t realize is, exiting the military can be just as hard, if not harder than entering it. Transitioning into becoming a brave warrior for our country comes with guidance, training, a team, support. As soon as your career in the military ends, you receive no guidance on how to transition back into the world. Living a normal life, getting a normal job, and especially, changing your mindset can be a lonesome and directionless process.
That is where non-profit organizations like Motorcycle Missions changes and saves the lives of retired veterans. Allowing those who once served to find an outlet, a community of like-minded people. Providing peers who sympathize with their struggles, relate to their daily challenges and support them to keep pushing. When we donated our Ducati to the organization, we never expected it to become such a masterpiece. We met the builders face to face, became touched by their stories, and received a peek at what mastermind motorcycle designer, Krystal Hess, decided to challenge the team with.
The weeks to come would be filled with hard work, and new skills to learn and master. From painting, powder coating, bodywork, fabricating, tire mounting, upholstery, and even engraving. These builders replaced the stock mid panels and tail section with the Hotbodies fender eliminator kit and Hotbodies Race tail section. They also added the Hotbodies Race Left Mid Panel, Race Right Mid Panel, and Race Tail Section Seat/Seat Pan. Unrecognizable almost the Scrambler already looked like a brand new motorcycle.
A pair of 7/8″ Biltwell Tracker Handlebars were bolted on with a CRG Brake Lever, and a CRG Clutch Lever. That added a sweet touch of aggressive, sporty, style into the mix of an already badass build. Well into the process and seeing the work come to life, garage nights started becoming less talk, more work. Krystal and Chris guided the team as they developed new skills of fabrication to create the license plate bracket for the taillight, and the number plate style headlight. One of our personal favorites, the Hotbodies MGP II Stainless Slip-on Exhaust that has been customized to feature the service identification badges of each of the builders.
Last minute touches of dot 5 brake fluid, HiFlo Oil Filter, Motul 20w50, and a BikeMaster 530 O-ring Chain were added. What was at one point just a frame was now rebuilt into something better. Holding meaningful touches of the number “22” in bold, blue, writing. Symbolizing the number of veterans that commit suicide each day. This is much more than just a motorcycle, it’s a symbol of hope, a symbol of community, it represents freedom, bravery, and how grateful we are for those who have fought for our freedom.
When I think of motorcycles, I think of peace. You find peace in the process of a build, there is a sense of control when you see your work come to life. When you ride you feel reborn. There is a moment in life where you feel your soul shake, your heart races, your hands become unsteady. Your breath feels impossible to catch, adrenaline takes over, instincts set in, the moment becomes so loud, so powerful, that your mind finds the quiet, your mind finds that peace. That moment, that feeling in your stomach, that sense of excitement in finding where you belong, that my friends is called finding your purpose. Motorcycle Missions helps those in need find that controlled chaos. They use motorcycles for therapy, to help our veterans and first responders regain control, find their purpose, and find their place of peace.
This bike can now be found traveling to International Motorcycle Shows through the IMS 2018-2019 season. Making an appearance at IMS, this motorcycle sits on the red carpet for more reasons than just an award. This creation shows up to be a symbol of selflessness and fearlessness, a tribute to all heroes who have served and are currently serving our country. Before you pass by the motorcycle with the blue “22” painted across the glossy, white, race panels, take a moment to remember just what it represents.
“At Motorcycle Missions, we understand that much of the post-traumatic stress (disorder) paradigm is that the need for purpose, camaraderie, and adrenaline is of the utmost importance. Our hope is to encourage our audience to instill a life-long passion for riding and building motorcycles, that will help them enjoy a happy, healthy, and balanced lifestyle after trauma.”
For more information on Motorcycle Missions please click here.