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Bikers ride for Wroten's kids

June 10, 2007|By ERIN JULIUS

HAGERSTOWN

For Dave Kane, a good motorcycle ride involves many different bikes and different riders, but one common cause. He was ready for a good ride Sunday morning.

On Sunday, almost 300 motorcycle riders snaked past the three Hagerstown prisons and made their way to Martinsburg, W.Va., riding almost 50 miles in memory of Jeffery Alan Wroten.

Wroten was a Roxbury Correctional Institution officer killed while guarding an inmate at Washington County Hospital in January 2006.

Money raised during the Second Annual Jeffery Alan Wroten Memorial Ride was set aside in an account for Wroten's five children, said Donald Seibert Sr., who organized the ride.

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Each rider paid $10 to participate.

"It's to help his kids out - something he can't do anymore," Seibert said.

Riders donated a little more than $4,900 Sunday, Seibert said.

Wroten, 44, of Martinsburg, W.Va., was guarding Brandon T. Morris in a hospital room when he was shot in the face with his own gun early on the morning of Jan. 26. He was pronounced dead the following day.

Seibert was an RCI correctional officer for 19 years before he retired in 2004. He worked with Wroten, Seibert said.

Last year's ride raised about $9,000 for Wroten's children, Seibert said.

Some of the riders dressed in black leather and orange Harley-Davidson shirts Sunday worked in the Hagerstown prisons and felt they needed to support their fellow officer. Other riders never entered a prison, but wanted to honor a man killed in the line of duty.

Carol Kane was riding with her husband, Dave Kane.

She worked at RCI for 10 years and now her daughter works there, Carol Kane said. While her daughter knew Wroten, Kane never met him, she said.

Sunday's ride was to support fellow officers, Kane said.

"I really think the officers aren't supported enough," she said.

Dave Kane worked at RCI for years and now works at the Maryland Correctional Training Center across the street, he said.

He didn't know Wroten, but felt he had to support the ride's cause, Kane said.

Eighteen riders from American Legion Post 31 in Westminster, Md., participated in the ride last year and returned Sunday, bringing with them $500 from the American Legion.

One of the American Legion members used to work at a Hagerstown prison, said Ed Smith, of Westminster.

The riders wanted to "show our appreciation for the job those guys have got to do," Smith said.

Emory Mingee and Al Jaworski rode in from Baltimore Sunday. They and a few other riders from the Blue Collar Riding Club came for the cause and for the love of riding.

"We enjoy riding more than anything else. If you can do it for a good cause, that just makes sense," Mingee said.

Motorcycle riders like to support people in need, Mingee said.

Charity rides "show people bikers aren't all bad people like television promotes us," Mingee said as he stood next to his bike wearing a black leather vest with his biker name, "Domino," emblazoned on the front.

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