Many of you probably already know that Custom Motorcycle Builder Billy Lane was involved in a motorcycle accident which claimed the life of Gerry V. Morelock, a 56 year old man who was just out riding his “Street Legal” Yamaha Scooter. It has been alleged that Billy Lane, while driving his custom-painted black Dodge Ram pickup on a suspended license, crossed over a double yellow line and slammmed head-on into Morelock who was just out for a ride, killing him instantly.
After toxicology reports came back showing the Billy Lane had a B.A.C. (blood alocohol content) of 0.192, more than twice the legal limit in Florida, Billy Lane was arrested and accused of drunk driving manslaughter in the death of the other biker. If convicted Billy Lane faces 15 years in prison.
You may wonder why I titled this editorial “Billy Lane, a Tragedy,” and not “Gerry V. Morelock” a tragedy.” The reason I titiled the editorial the way I did is because no one knows who Gerry V. Morelock is, whereas most bikers know who Billy Lane is.
By all accounts Gerry V. Morelock was a great guy, with a great family, and was just out for a ride on his Yamaha Scooter. He did not deserve to die the way he did. His death is a tragedy.
As a lawyer, I am not going to write an editorial about Billy Lane’s guilt. He is innocent until proven guilty in a Court of Law. If he is found guilty then all bet’s are off.
The irony of this story is that one biker killed another biker. I have read in places that Gerry V. Morelock was only riding a Street Legal Scooter, so that does not qualify him as a Biker; WRONG. He was riding on two wheels just like the rest of us. He did not deserve to die that day, he did nothing wrong. Gerry V. Morelock is and was a Biker and deserves the respect and sympathy of the rest of the Biker Community.
Billy Lane was a cager the day he caused the death of Gerry V. Morelock. He was a cager who is accused of drunk driving manslaughter, but also driving with a suspended license and other crimes.
We will have to wait for the Court System to pass judgment on Billy Lane. We all know how the biker community will treat Billy Lane, even if he is not found guilty. We do not like people who kill our own, even if he is one of our own.
So what is the editorial really about? It is about, Gerry V. Morelock, a Tragedy. He was a good and decent man, who was cut down due to no fault of his own, by a negligent cager who also happened to be a biker. He did not even have a chance.
The next time one of you wants to get drunk and put the keys into your car or motorcycle remember one thing; is your life really worth it? Is the life of another really worth it? Would not it be better to take a cab, get a ride from a friend, or even sleeping it off on the sidewalk be better than potentially killing another, and losing your own life and career over it?
Being a Biker Lawyer I get regular reports of Motorcycle Accidents and Motorcycle related injuires and deaths from all over the country. If just makes me sick to my stomach. Most people do not realize the carnage that is occuring to Bikers and Motorcyclist from all over country on a daily basis. It is not pretty. If you are a biker or a non biker; the next time you are riding in your cage, why don’t you take a couple of seconds and remember, the guy or gal on that motorcycle is a human being just like you.
Go in peace Gerry V. Morelock, and may god rest your soul. We in the biker community remember you. Although you were riding a Yamaha Scooter, you were a true biker!
By Norman Gregory Fernandez, Esq. , Copyright 2006