New Castle News

July 12, 2013

Bikers remember fallen firefighter

Kurt Stalma
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — Area bikers gathered last night to honor one of their own.

Hiram’s Scottish Riders arranged a bike show and ride, in memory of Daniel Gallatin. Gallatin died in May when his motorcycle was hit from behind.

He was a member of the Scott Township Volunteer Fire Department, and served as fire chief for 12 years. He was also an avid biker.

Gallatin was a member of the Red Knights, a motorcycle group for firefighters, which is why the bike show was dedicated to him.

Tim Rayner helped to organize the show, and said the group typically does a bike night at the Scottish Rite Cathedral, but this year, it decided to do a bike show for the members’ fallen friend. Proceeds benefit the Children’s Dyslexia Center of Western Pennsylvania, located in The Cathedral.

The ride began at New Castle Harley Davidson near Rose Point, and proceded to the Cathedral. The bikers received an escort from the New Castle Police Department and were followed by a Scott Township fire truck.

Part of the entourage, Rayner said, was Vic Fredericks, who belongs to a club that helps support learning centers across the country. Rayner said that Fredericks has driven to 48 states to help raise money for the learning centers.

Rayner expected a couple hundred bikes to be a part of the show.

Various trophies were given out as part of the evening. Awards went to the loudest bike, winner of a slow race, oldest Harley in show, best custom bike and best female custom bike.

Not included in the competition for oldest Harley but present at the bike show was the first Harley ever produced in Pennsylvania. The bike was built in 1973 in York,  and the serial number is all zeros. Rayner said that this helped draw an audience to the event.

The motorcycle group Riders through the Storm helped put on the event, Rayner said, adding that Gallatin was a fan of the work the group does in helping the homeless.

He said that the Christian Motorcyclist Association also had been a great help in putting the event together.

Of Gallatin, Rayner said noted that he was a firefighter, a motorcycle rider, an honor guard meber and a master mason.

Last night’s bike show gave those who knew him a chance to honor and remember the life of Daniel E. Gallatin.