SLt Louis-Pierre Gosselin – Base PA OJT
When Joe Lescene, a long-time supporter of the Military Police National Motorcycle Relay, died in a tragic accident last year, his friends made sure his legacy – and his bike – were honoured in the annual relay.
The former Petty Officer Second Class died after he fell from a cliff while on vacation in Oregon last September. The loss was a blow not only to his friends and family, but to the Relay, an event that helps raise money for the Military Police Fund for Blind Children. In recognition of this tragedy and his contribution to the Military Police National Motorcycle Relay, his friends CPO2 Yannick Gagné, CPO2 Yves Ouellet, LS Daniel D’Sa and LS Mike Hodgson decided to honour him during the Vancouver Island portion. They renamed it the Joe Lescene Memorial Ride.
“He was a great friend and someone you could count on,” said CPO2 Gagné in front of the Naden Drill Shed before kicking off the Joe Lescene Memorial Ride Saturday July 7.
CPO2 Gagné mustered what he called the ‘guts’ to call Lescene’s family and ask if he could use Lescene’s bike in the ride.
That is how he arrived on July 7 under an overcast sky in the parking lot beside the Drill Shed, riding the flaming-orange Harley-Davidson of his late friend.
A further tribute was built by Master Seaman Philip Thorsteinson, helped by LS Hodgson, in the form of a memorial box made of shedua, a special West African wood, resistant to the passing of time. Inside the box is a bell with the Canadian flag and Lescene’s nametag displayed on a navy-blue backdrop.
“I will be carrying that from coast to coast. It is a way that we can pay tribute to Joe and everything that he’s done,” said Lamont French, National Chair and Ride Captain for the national relay that begins July 29.
The event is open to any type of vehicle.
“If you believe in doing charity work, and if this charity is something you want to be a part of, you are welcome with open arms,” adds French.
This year the National Ride will gather a record number of 24 participants, riding from Victoria to St. John’s, Nfld. All proceeds go to the Military Police Fund for Blind Children.
The charity has provided over $250,000 in B.C. alone in the last 10 years to children in Western Canada.
To see the Relay’s scheduled stops or to find out how to donate or participate, visit the Military Police National Motorcycle Relay website at: www.nationalmotorcyclerelay.ca
Filed Under: Top Stories
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