Sturgis Hall of Fame Announces Freedom Fighter Inductees

Elizabeth "Boots" Buckholz Among Honorees

The Sturgis Motorcycle Museum amp; Hall of Fame is proud to announce the 2006 Freedom Fighters Hall of Fame Inductees, Elizabeth “Boots” Buckholz, Rich “Neb” Nebelsick; and “Deacon” Dave Phillips.

The Freedom Fighters Hall of Fame recognizes the commitment and sacrifices individuals across the nation, and world, have made to protect the rights of motorcyclists. In their honor the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum amp; Hall of Fame established the nations first and only Freedom Fighters Hall of Fame.

Elizabeth “Boots” Buckholz has been the backbone of ABATE of Florida, serving as state secretary, legislative officer and state office manager. She has worked tirelessly for more than 20 years for the riders in Florida. Boots is passionate about riding and is dedicated to promoting women in motorcycling and their many accomplishments. Her dedication to motorcyclists extends beyond her state and has earned her national recognition.

Rich “Neb” Nebelsick took the last sentence of the Declaration of Independence to heart, “We mutually pledge to each other our Lives, or Fortunes and our sacred Honor.” Neb, often referred to as “just a regular guy,” owned a motorcycle shop and became a freedom fighter in the late 60s when a rider walked in complaining about the ticket he had just received. The injustice prompted Nebelsick to take on the helmet law in Illinois, investing his money, his time, and eventually mortgaging his business for something he believed in. He took his fight all the way to the Illinois Supreme Court, where the helmet law was found to be unconstitutional. He gave his all for fellow riders and asked nothing in return.

“Deacon” David Phillips founded ABATE of California in 1981. He would travel to runs and swap meets in his mobile custom paint shop and talk to his customers and friends about motorcyclists rights while working. ABATE meetings were held in his garage in until membership expanded enough to form Local 1. To get the word out he wrote articles on legislation, safety issues and national laws, printing the monthly newsletter on a machine he cranked by hand. He is a single man who believed in letting those ride decide, and through his leadership, hard work and dedication the organization has grown to 51 Locals. ABATE has earned the respect of both the riders and legislators in California, and continues to be a vital organization.

Inductees will be honored at the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Breakfast, Wednesday, August 9, at the Holiday Inn in Spearfish, South Dakota. Breakfast tickets are available for a $25 donation, or reserved tables of eight for $250. Traditionally, the breakfast sells out and we recommend that you purchase your tickets well in advance of the event. Tickets can be purchased by phoning the Museum 605.347.2001 or on the Museums web page

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