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Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Driver Acquitted in Deaths of Jarheads MC Members

Concord, New Hampshire (August 10, 2022) - A jury on Tuesday acquitted a pickup truck driver of causing the deaths of seven members of the Jarheads Motorcycle Club in a head-on collision in northern New Hampshire back in 2019.

Volodymyr Zhukovskyy, 26, of West Springfield, Massachusetts, had pleaded not guilty to multiple counts of negligent homicide, manslaughter, driving under the influence, and reckless conduct, although some of the charges were dropped during the trial. He has been in jail since the crash on June 21, 2019, in Randolph. His trial began on July 26.

The seven MC members who died were from New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. They ranged in age from 42 to 62. They were part of a larger group that had just left a motel and were headed to an American Legion Post in Gorham for a fundraiser. The jury deliberated for less than three hours before returning the verdict.

Prosecutors had argued that Zhukovskyy, who had taken heroin, fentanyl and cocaine that day, repeatedly swerved back and forth before the head-on crash and told police he caused it. But a judge dismissed eight charges related to whether he was impaired, and his attorneys blame the lead biker, Albert “Woody” Mazza, who was among those killed.

“He was drunk, he was not looking where he was going, he lost control of his motorcycle and slid in front of Vlad Zhukovskyy’s truck. Al Mazza caused this accident. Vlad Zhukovskyy is not guilty,” defense attorney Jay Duguay said in closing statements. “There is no doubt that this accident was a tragedy,” Duguay said. “But we are not here to decide whether or not this was a tragedy".

RELATED | Memorial Honoring MC Members Killed in Crash

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Duguay accused prosecutors of ignoring that their own accident reconstruction unit contradicted their theory that Zhukovskyy crossed into the oncoming lane. An expert hired by the defense, meanwhile, testified that the crash happened on the center line of the road and would have occurred even if the truck was in the middle of its lane because Mazza’s motorcycle was heading in that direction.

“From the beginning of this investigation, the state had made up their mind about what had happened, evidence be damned,” said Duguay, who also highlighted inconsistencies between witness accounts or when witnesses contradicted themselves. “Those witnesses were all over the place about what they recalled and what they claimed to have seen,” he said.

In particular, Duguay suggested that members of the Jarheads Motorcycle Club “shaded” their accounts to protect Mazza and the club. Prosecutor Scott Chase acknowledged some inconsistencies, but asked jurors to remember the circumstances.

“People were covering the dead, trying to save the barely living, comforting the dying. This wasn’t story time,” he said. “They were up here talking about some of the most unimaginable chaos, trauma, death and carnage that we can even imagine three years later. They were talking about hell broke open.”

Witnesses were consistent, he argued, in describing the truck as weaving back and forth before the crash. That behavior continued “until he killed people,” Chase said. “That’s what stopped him. It’s not that he made some responsible decision to start paying attention or do the right thing,” he said. “The only thing that stopped him was an embankment after he tore through a group of motorcycles.”

Chase called the attempt to blame Mazza a “fanciful story” and “frivolous distraction,” while reminding jurors of that Zhukovskyy, who didn’t testify at trial, told investigators “Obviously, I caused the crash.”

“He was crystal clear from the very beginning that he caused this crash,” Chase said. “That is what he said, because that is what happened.”

Killed were Mazza, of Lee, New Hampshire; Edward and Jo-Ann Corr, a couple from Lakeville, Massachusetts; Michael Ferazzi, of Contoocook, New Hampshire; Desma Oakes, of Concord, New Hampshire; Daniel Pereira, of Riverside, Rhode Island; and Aaron Perry, of Farmington, New Hampshire.

Source: Fox News  

Wednesday, June 1, 2022

June is PTSD Awareness Month

Indianapolis, IN (June 1, 2022) - The National Center for PTSD has designated June National PTSD awareness month. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) gained notoriety during the Vietnam war in the 1970's when the phrase was coined, but symptoms were being detected in military service men back during the second World War where people classified it as “shell shock.” 

It was not until the 1980’s when it was classified as a diagnosis.

The History Of PTSD Awareness Month

In 2010, Senator Kent Conrad pushed to get official recognition of PTSD via a “day of awareness” in tribute to a North Dakota National Guard member who took his life following two tours in Iraq (S. Res. 541).

Staff Sergeant Joe Biel died in 2007 after suffering from PTSD; Biel committed suicide after his return from duty to his home state. SSgt. Biel’s birthday, June 27, was selected as the official PTSD Awareness Day, which is now observed every year.

In 2014, the Senate designated the full month of June for “National Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Awareness Month” (S. Res. 481)

Our men and women selflessly fight for our freedom and need to be our number one priority when they come home. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder can happen to anyone, and for those that are suffering need to know it is not a weakness, and it is not something you have to live with.

If you or someone you know is suffering from PTSD, don’t hesitate to get help. 
Learn more at:

Sunday, May 29, 2022

Bikers celebrate Memorial Day in Sioux City

Sioux City, Iowa, (May 29, 2022) - Motorcycle riders across the Midwest met up Sunday afternoon at the American Legion Hall in Sergeant Bluff for Sioux City’s 8th annual Thunder on the Missouri. The ride is modeled after the Rolling Thunder motorcycle ride that takes place each year in Washington DC.

Bikers met up at the community center to enjoy food and drinks before riding as a group to Siouxland Freedom Park in South Sioux City. Once they get there, a memorial service is held at the park’s Vietnam Memorial Wall. 

Organizers were impressed with this year’s turnout, with over 300 bikers participating. “I think this is a great, great turnout for the bikes and everybody that’s here today,” said Aaron Van Beek, President and Director of the Midwest Honor Flight. “I know a lot of groups have come from all over the Tri-State Area here to come and really be a part of this.”

The day is all about honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country and recognizing the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Many of those participating had a personal connection to the cause. “Why do I ride?” said Larry Haitz, Director of Thunder on the Missouri. “Because I have a lot of friends here that are Vietnam veterans. I have a classmate that’s on the wall over there, and it’s personal for me.”

Patches, hats and other souvenirs were also sold at the event. All of the proceeds go to Midwest Honor Flights, an organization that helps fly veterans to Washington DC to see the memorials honoring the wars they served in.

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Brotherhood and Bikes: Combat Veterans Help other Veterans

Drasko, Arkansas, USA (February 23, 2022) - Every month, D.J's Diner becomes a biker bar and a veterans club all at once, except that the leather-clad bikers aren't looking for a fight or booze. It would get in the way of their mission.

"Everybody turns and looks at us," Daniel "D-Bo" King said, the road captain for the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association Arkansas chapter 7-8. "We love it. The louder the pipes, the more we turn a lot of heads."

The chapter is based in Cleburne County and is one of eight in Arkansas and dozens across the country. It's an exclusive club for a couple reasons.

"You have to have at least a 500 c.c. motorcycle, and you've got to be a combat veteran," Bill Morton said, who handles communications and social media for the chapter. "And you got to have your paperwork to prove it."

Facebook: CVMA AR 7-1
Source: THV11