ATV memorial ride serves as loving tribute
CHISHOLM — A stream of 100 or so All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs) gathered in Chisholm Saturday and headed out on the Second Annual Ed Walberg Jr. Memorial Ride.
The ride was established as a tribute to Ed Walberg Jr., who died at age 40 as a result of a bar shooting in downtown Chisholm in March 2010. A number of people were involved with organizing the event, including many of Ed’s close friends, John Champa, Kevin Succio, Troy Workman and Aaron Nelson.
The large turnout was especially touching for Ed’s mother, Diane Lavern, who said her son would really be astonished and proud. “I just think it’s really great,” she said, holding back her tears.
Champa said the ride serves as a tribute to Ed as an ATV rider. “We’re trying to celebrate Eddy’s life and carry on the memory of something he liked to do,” he said.
Many fond memories of Ed were shared as the riders gathered in the parking lot behind Tom & Jerry’s, before heading out on the ride. T-shirts and stickers with Ed’s photo, were distributed as a loving tribute.
“I think it’s awesome that everyone is here,” said Jeannie Quirk, adding, “He was a good man.” Diane Tyler agreed the turnout was excellent, and said it was a good memorial. “Ed’s with us in spirit,” she said.
The ride follows trails Walberg enjoyed riding on his ATV. Succio said there is a scenic lookout along the trail that was one of Ed’s favorite spots. Last year a group photo was taken at that lookout, and Succio said they planned to do the same this year.
Champa said the plan is to make the ride an annual event, possibly inching it even closer to summer. He said organizers decided to set the date for this year’s ride a little later, hoping for more favorable weather than riders endured in 2010.