Million Mile Man Back on Motorcycle after Devastating Accident.
It’s hard to keep a biker down. Even after a devastating motorcycle accident, a strong desire to get back on a bike helps many motorcyclists get through a difficult recovery.
Former Wisconsin Senator and motorcycle advocate, Dave Zien, was fortunate enough to get back on a new bike just five months after a devastating motorcycle accident. Last March, Zien suffered critical injuries in a motorcycle accident on his way back from Daytona Bike Week in Florida when an SUV driver lost control of his vehicle, causing it to flip into the path of Zien’s oncoming motorcycle. Unable to avoid a collision with the overturned SUV, Zien was thrown over 300 feet upon impact. His left leg was crushed in the accident and later required an above the knee amputation. The crash also shattered his right hip, which doctors reconstructed with metal plates and screws.
Many know Zien as the “Million Mile Man.” At the age of 59, Zien hit one million miles on his 1991 FXRT Harley-Davidson in April 2009. This feat took him 18 years and many cross-country trips to accomplish. Zien returned his bike to Harley-Davidson, who in turn gave it to the Sturgis Motorcycle Museum & Hall of Fame, where it is currently displayed. Zien is also an inductee of the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame and the Sturgis Hall of Fame.
Zien’s accomplishments off the road are impressive as well. He worked as an advocate for motorcyclists’ rights while serving in the Wisconsin Legislature from 1988 to 2006. Zien also held the position of Vice President of the Wisconsin Better Bikers Association. A former Marine and Vietnam Vet, Zien was often seen riding with full-sized American and Wisconsin flags proudly displayed on his bike. Those close to him describe him as a positive person with a strong devotion to his family and belief in God.
According to a Leader-Telegram article, Zien’s recovery from his severe motorcycle accident injuries required multiple surgeries. He also underwent extensive physical therapy and rehab in order to learn how to walk with his prosthetic leg and walker. Despite all of the obstacles he’s had to overcome, Zien was back on a three-wheeled Harley in August 2011. He’s an inspiration to all bikers who’ve been in a serious motorcycle accident. As Zien is quoted in the Leader-Telegram article, “…challenges make us stronger.”
Ride safe and stay strong!