The desire to give something back to the community, especially to veterans, has always been a large part of what motorcycle clubs do. The Pocono chapter of the Latin American Motorcyclists of America is no different. In 2013, the club heard the tragic story of 14 year old Luke Hartrum, the son of Army veteran Lori Hartrum from Swiftwater, Pennsylvania. Luke was struck by a car in nearby Lehigh County in 2007. Luke was seriously injured. Said his mother of the incident; “Luke died three times. He was in a coma, brain dead”. Miraculously, since then he’s been able to recover to the point that he is now happy and driving his own wheelchair.
One challenge facing Luke’s family was the fact that their home wasn’t designed with disabled people in mind. In fact, the family moved Luke’s bedroom into the main floor den for easier accessibility. The room, however, lacked the space required for Luke to get the necessary therapy needed to stimulate his paralyzed leg or play his Nintendo Wii (his favorite toy). What’s more is that in order to bathe, the family had to carry Luke up to the second floor bathroom.
The club decided to change all of that and make Luke much more comfortable in the process. Reluctant to accept charity at first, Luke’s mom eventually agreed and they began formulating a plan. They contacted the local Home Depot, who was more than happy to help out. They donated $5000 in gift cards to the project. They also contacted Marine veteran Michael Potts, a contractor in the area who devoted a great deal of time and expertise to this special renovation project.
Since the project got underway, about half of the garage has been converted into a disabled-accessible bathroom. Additional space has also been added to Luke’s bedroom so he can use his Wii and have enough room to get that much needed therapy for his leg. Currently, Luke is recovering from a surgery to correct a spinal curvature, but when he gets home, the space will be ready for him to use.
“Saturday February 1st at 10am the Pocono chapter will purchase and transport a special tub from the Home Depot in Stroudsburg, PA to the Hartrum home. Afterward, at 11am, chapter members will be present at the Hartrum home where it is expected that additional renovation will be taking place,” says Donna Toro, of the Pocono chapter of the Latin American Motorcyclists of America.
The club is now looking for another veteran or veteran’s family to help in 2014, and they are sure to have support from Luke Hartrum and his family.
“I wanna help them help someone else get what they are giving me,” says Luke Hartrum.
At Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys® and BAM Motorcycle News we love hearing stories of how our fellow riders are helping out in the community. If you know of a motorcycle club doing great charitable works please let us know. We would love to feature them in a story and help promote their cause.
Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys® & BAM