In the Beginning
One day in 1974, Ed Gallant came up with the idea of starting a motorcycle club for police people in the area to ride together and called Chuck Shuman to see what he thought of the idea. Chuck was on duty, as a sergeant at the time of the call. Ed Gallant and Chuck Shuman met for coffee at the Black Knight Restaurant in Brewer, Maine and decided that starting a motorcycle club for law enforcement officers was indeed a great idea.
A meeting was planned at the Brewer Police Department. Besides Chuck Shuman, seven showed up: Ed Gallant, Wayne LeBree, Mike Hall, Doug Minor (dec), Joel Rudom (dec), Chuck Gessner (dec), and Bill Robinson (dec). They talked and set up another meeting and that's how The Blue Knights got started. Twenty-three showed at the second meeting from the Sheriff's Office, Probation Dept., Bangor and Brewer Police Departments.
A President (Chuck Shuman) was elected and a committee formed to draw up bylaws and The club was off and running. The rest of the elections were; Vice President Bill Robinson, Secretary Joel Rudom, Treasurer Ed Gallant, with the Board of Directors being Mike Hall, Chuck Gessner, and Wayne LeBree.
Next the club needed a name. Chief Dave Koman of the Brewer Police Department suggested Blue Knights as it was a popular police Television show starring George Kennedy. It was decided a logo was needed. Ed Gallant found an old Interstate 95 sign which was stored in the Brewer PD property locker. Chuick Shuman had sent away for a motorcycle insignia that was commonly worn by Police Motor Officers which was a winged motorcycle wheel. The insignia, along with the sign were given to Sgt. John Bryant who was the police artist for Brewer Maine and asked him to draw a knight on top of the wheel insignia and put it in the I95 sign. Our logo was born!
During the first club ride, to Calais Maine about 90 miles from Bangor, President Shuman kept looking in his mirrors and saw how proud and straight the guys were riding. So he started ending all the club mail with "Ride with Pride". The motto caught on and that's how for all these years it has stuck.
The rest as they say is; HISTORY.
Today the Blue Knights has grown to include 11 Conferences with 637 Chapters and about 19,000 Members within 25 countries. The Blue Knights and it's members, to date, have donated over 16.5 million dollars to various charities.
North Carolina Chapter Sixteen was officially chartered August 10th of 2009. We started with twenty-two chapter charter members and cover the South Mecklenburg and Union County area as well as members from other states such as South Carolina.
We are part of the Mason Dixon Conference which made up of chapters from Delaware, Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.
We enjoy riding with all sorts of people and all sorts of bikes. We enthusiastically welcome all family members, visitors, guests, and new members.
If you have an interest in joining, or you would just like to ride with us on occasion, feel free to take a look around the website. It's still a work in progress, but you should be able to find plenty of information to get you started. If you would like to e-mail us for more info, just go to the contact us section and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.
We hope you enjoy our website. Thanks for stopping by and hey, let's be careful out there!