What we looked like in the Beginning

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This photo, the earliest known group shot of the J.R.M.C., from the Stockinger collection, was in a group of 1944 photos. It shows the Jolly Roger Motorcycle Club on street bikes just prior to a run. Notice how young they all are. The club was formed by Highline High School graduates.  There doesn’t appear to be a club uniform yet though it is possible that the weather was cold enough that they’ve covered up their club shirts (they didn’t wear back patches yet). Notice the flyers “helmets” and goggles and one rider with the club cap. So far the only rider I’ve been able to identify is Larry “Poke” Poitras who is on the 7th bike from the left. His bike sticks out further than the rest of the lineup. Larry isn’t wearing a hat. Nearly all the bikes are Harley Davidsons though at least one Indian (3rd from left) is present. The first bike with the custom painted tank is a 1940 flat head (probably a 45). I think the first rider is Ken Bulen and that might be Lila he’s hugging. I’m also thinking the 2nd rider is Woody Combs with his future wife. I’ll keep working on identification but that’s my working hypothesis for now. Photo was taken by Jean Stockinger who labelled it, “gang at the XXX 1944″

Our early members were all-rounders. They raced TT, did hillclimbs and road runs. They lived life to the fullest.  I’m posting this photo by itself to honor this earliest known representation of the Jolly Rogers Motorcycle Club. It is an absolutely fantastic photograph and reminds us of the great history we J.R.M.C. bikers of 2009 are linked to. Next time we go for a group ride consider that we are still riding down the roads that they followed all those many years ago.  You can almost hear them firing up those old American Irons and then tearing out of that parking lot and down the highway……..

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