THE WALKER FAMILY
Hall of Fame Inductee – 2005
Harold Walker came to Sturgis in 1924 after purchasing the Meade County Bank, and ran the bank until 1962. J.C. “Pappy” Hoel became a customer of the bank and thus began the relationship that lasted through several generations of the Walker family.
The tradition of a free feed for rally participants in City Park began in the late 40’s. Then there was the cost of trophies and awards, and as the races were free, the cost of sponsoring and holding the races. These costs were always underwritten by Harold Walker, who stayed involved with the Black Hills Motor Classic until his death in 1975.
Upon his return from the Korean War, Harold’s son Bruce took up the rally banner. In addition to taking over banking responsibilities, Bruce served as treasurer on the Black Hills Motor Classic Board of Directors for 30 years, always making certain that the Motor Classic was solvent and had sufficient funds to operate effectively. He also worked the races, supervising admissions, overseeing attendance and finances, and helped build the race track that the Jackpine Gypsies use today.
Brother Herman, still an avid motorcyclist, also served for many years on the Board of the Black Hills Motor Classic and worked the races during each rally.
He and his wife went on to open Hog Heaven Campground, developing it into one of the most beloved gathering spots for visitors to the Rally.
Herm’s passion for motorcycling now extends to Laughlin, Nevada. In 1992 Herm persuaded Don Laughlin, owner of the Riverside Hotel and Casino, to host the Laughlin River Run to help generate funds for a children’s charity. And thus another great motorcycle event was born.