Is it worth it?

Is it worth it?

Here in So-Cal, we’ve had two deaths with-in the last year.

Then Garrett pass away doing what he loved. (Its hurts the most when you’ve contact with the individual. God Bless you Motoman393)

I’ve rode and raced for thirty years, since 1972. I couldn’t wait, for my children to grow, so I could give to them the same Passion, which I loved so dearly. I now have three of the most wonderful teenaged boys. Ages 14, 16, 18.

My 16 year old is an athlete, excels at every sport he tries. Varsity Golf from his freshman year to Captain of his Golf Team as a junior, Varsity Hockey same as above, Travel Tournament Hockey and he love riding (wants to Race MX, Mom say enough sports already). He has had two nasty get offs already in the past, from a broken finger to a broken jaw, coming up 3 feet short on a sixty foot double, that Dad who would never try it even though Dad has had minor professional MX experience a teenage.

Yesterday my 16-year-old Wesley had minimum day at school and asks if we could go ride, like a proud father I said yes (re-arrange my work scheduled). As he was riding the Vet track at LEMX (Lake Elsinore MX, So-Cal), he had all the tables tops down, he came to three tables in a row, over jump the first, slide off the back of the bike, grabbed a handle of throttle, launch twenty feet in the air, 50 feet in length, hit the eject button and push away from the bike twenty feet in the air.

Now he’s in the Trauma center at Inland Valley hospital, awaiting the neosurgeon recommendation (the trauma Doc and Trauma surgeon have passed on analysis to higher ups). His status is a crushed verabrete, with some bone fragments close to the spinal column. He has all his feeling’s (thank God) but it’s not over.

What should I do?

Please pray for my Son, Wesley Marion.

Richard Marion


On the list in my prayers.

I am sorry for your son, I am sure the Dr's will do all they can and he will be fine.

Is it worth it ?

That I can not answer for you, I understand your feelings though totally especially with regards to your son.

Just don't get down on yourself, YOU are sharing your passion with your son, Ho many fathers DON'T do that. How lucky to have a Dad that takes time off to be with his son.

No don't sell yourself short buddie, You son regardless is happy to be your son and grateful beyond anything you will imagine for those days on the trail with "HIM".

What you should do?

Stay at his side and pray for him, stay upright and positive with him. This may sound kind of odd, but hand his health and spirit over to GOD his Father Above, allow HIM who is faithfull access to your son.....

I will be praying please keep us informed

First off i hope that everything works out for your son and your family. I think i is grreat you have such a good relationship with your sons, it is soemthing many fathers today lack. i was lucky enough to have a good father who raised me the best he could and got me into the sport of motor cycles witch i have come to love. when i crashed last year breaking my wrist and hitting my head so hard it cracked my helmet my parrents wanted me to slow down or quit, well my mom did. but its what we love. i ride that track all the time and i hate those 3 table tops. everytime i do through that section i feel odd, i don't know why. its so slow and then you have to get so much distance. i have never liked them. again, i hope your son comes out ok.


I get a lump in my throat when I read your story of how you share things with your son that you both enjoy.

My father and I didn't have that kind of a relationship at all. He was Mr. Business and loved putting me down alot. He has since passed away and I feel good trying to do whatever I could to better our relationship, much to no avail.

He was a good man at heart but I'm sure he is looking down on us and having regrets about not doing things with me.

Things happen and we don't always know why. Weather it be for a "greater cause" or whatever. They happen.

Rest easy my friend. Look back at what you have done to accommidate you AND your son. You actually changed your work schedule to do something with your son he enjoys.

The fact is you wanted to be with him, period!

That alone goes a very long ways to a boy! Trust me, I know.

I will pray for his speedy recovery and trust others will to. He is young so he will recoup fast.

Bottom line........just keep being there for him no matter where it is!!!

I ask myself the same question every time my 13 yr old has a crash, he rides over his head and needs a different bike.

Good Luck and keep loving your kids, Mike


I know how you feel. my oldest son started riding and racing 7 yrs ago at 12. At the close of his first season he had a nasty crash were he spent 5 very painful days in the hospital and another 2 months of recovery in bed with multiple compound fractures to his leg and broken collar bone. This was just the first of many scary trips to the emergency room. This past Father's day we went riding and he got off very hard. He hit head first after landing a 4th gear downhill double. When those that were around him got to him, he was out cold and not breathing. They rolled him over and he started breathing but was out for another 8 minutes. Luckily he didn't break any bones but had a serious concussion that took 3 months for his headache to go away. It scared me! I thought I lost him. I thought that this crash would slow him down and that he would want to give up on his dream. Matt will be going pro before the end of the year and his goal is to race the Nationals in '03 and Supercross in '04. I questioned my supporting that dream and even getting him into the sport that I have loved since I was a kid. But when I look back at everything we have gone through it has always been the times we spent at the track or camping in the desert riding dirt bikes where we have really bonded. We have a good father son relationship and he's done the other sports, but for some reason he and my two other kids always remind me of the great times we have had riding and they want to do the same with their kids when they grow up. I think that's a pretty cool thing to pass on. I have to put my faith in God and what happens happens. I lead a MX bible study and we talk about this stuff all the time. This sport that we are willingly involved in has it's share of dangers, but so does just about every other sport our kids get involved in at this age. My kids are aware of the dangers and know that pain is a very real part of riding. It's all a part of life. We pray each time before we ride and ask for God's protection. I have let my kids go on rides with other families. I have had the other kids parents come back and tell me how my kid stopped everyone, including adults and had prayer before getting on the bikes. Like I said I put my faith in God! I will pray for your son's quick recovery and for you as a father of active children I know that we hurt when our kids hurt.

God Bless!

Mario Andretti said he never worried when he was racing , but it was absolute torture when his son was racing.

I don't like the way the sport is headed. MX was dangerous and now can be deadly. What is the point of all this air time. The result I see is young guys permanently damaging themselves for what reason? So a bunch of drunken spectators can be entertained.

I raced from the mid seventies and at times when I get up in the morning I feel like shitz, imagine what todays riders are going to feel like in 20 years.

Marion, I hope everything turns out well for your boy. I'm no MD but if he has feeling I think he will be OK>

Is it worth it? I think so. You can choose to live life on a daily basis, enjoying the time we have, and doing things you enjoy. Or you can choose to fear everything that might be dangerous. You could just as easily be maimed or killed by taking your car to the store, or plugging in your toaster. People die by all kinds of mundane daily tasks. I for one, refuse to sit scared in my home, shaking, worried, and nervous about what danger may be lurking ahead. Your hot water heater could explode, the gas main may leak, hell, an airplane could even crash into your house. We are not safe from danger, it is a fact of life.

All you can do is wear your safety gear, ride smart, and trust in God. I am the only income in my family, so me getting hurt bad would definitely be a bummer, but I pay extra for disability insurance so that I can still get a decent paycheck if I can't work. I do not worry about getting hurt on the track, I believe that the more you worry about it, the more likely you will be to back off or not concentrate at a critical moment. I am 32 and still jump all the big jumps, I see an expert rider do it and I know I can most likely do it. I am a +30 Int. rider and pride myself on having a modicum of talent and smarts about a new difficult jump. I LOVE to jump my bike. My son loves the motorcycles and I am getting him a 50cc after Christmas so he can start learning it with me, I will teach him to NEVER ride without gear on, to THINK on track, and to ENJOY life while he has it.

Worthwhile? Yes...but a caveat. Ride within your limits. Take a slow lap to check out any changes before blasting off at full race speed. THINK, and always be PRO-active, not reactive. Anything can happen, and while you can never avoid ALL crashes in motocross, you can try to limit the severity.

Good luck to you and your son, I will pray for him and his recovery.


Good luck with your son. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

I have to say that it is worth it. Everything in life is dangerous. Unfortunately MX is dangerous...but the memories you have with your sons are life long and the experience helps your sons grow and have a well rounded life. People get paralyzed from simple things like slipping in the shower or falling wrong on a chair. Do not beat yourself up over an accident just because the bias is that the sport is dangerous and people's reaction is to say, "I told you so".

My neighbor's daughter tripped the other day on the sidewalk and fell face first into a bed of river rocks. Her face is all bruised and cut up. They accepted this as an accident and no one or anything was to blame. She also rides an XR50. If this had happened on her motorcyle...they would naturally feel guilty that a motorcycle is dangerous and that they are responsible for the accident.

Do not beat yourself up for enjoying life. Accidents are accidents. Be safe and hope your son gets better.

This may be somewhat redundant to the last few posts but surely you are need of lots of encouragement right now. I agree, anything can be dangerous. Your son plays hockey? Remember the girl in the stands a few months back?? I read somewhere recently that auto accidents are the leading killer of teenage children. My 11yr old, who lost interest in MX, was recently hit (thank God only lightly) while riding his bike home from school(1/2mi away) by some inattentive old biddy. God forbid you should teach your sons to use firearms in the sport of hunting. Etc., etc.

Your heart was in the right place. To me, the only important thing is to recognize that what you're doing has risks, minimize them to all practical extents (safety gear, training, etc.) and enjoy each day to its fullest. Each time I ride with my other son I make him repeat the mantra before he heads off - "be safe, have fun, there are no trophies to be won today". I occasionally have to remind myself as well.

Good luck and best wishes to you and your son(s), who is lucky enough to have a father who cares.

First of all, your son and your family are in our prayers.

While the question can only be answered by you, I would have to say it has been worth it to me personally, even after a few fairly heavy duty crashes (titanium in face, titanium in lower leg). For me it's a life passion, and to be able to enjoy it at some level or another gives me great satisfaction. The "nut" in Cyclenut refers to that passion, which has me wrenching on bikes, cleaning them, modifying them, reading about them, or what the heck-even riding them now and then. :) So the Worth it? answer lies in the heart of the beholder, I would say.

More to your case, just being a loving father to your son is what matters most, and is the most "worth it" endeavor I can imagine. It's obvious that you have that covered. Let the rest work itself out while you are with your son, who needs his Dad.

May God bless your family through this trying ordeal. Your will remain in our thoughts and prayers.


marion,it hurts me whenever i hear another rider was seriuosly thoughts go out to your son,you and your family.i wish him a full and speedy recovery.try and stay positive.positive energy is a great healer surround your son with thought are with you


It seems redundant now but truthfully you, your son and the rest of your family are in all our prayers and thoughts. Yes this sport is dangerous and yes it is worth the risks. I ride with my 14 Y.O. son at the local MX track and his first big crash a month made me freeze when I came aroound and saw him down from a hard endo and face plant. I had to make that call to my wife. He was maddest that we had to leave to get his mouth and braces fixed once the little birds stopped flying around his head. I am a spinal injury / paralysis survivor. The surgeons can do some wonderful things for your son. Right now you take care of him and your family, geet back healthy and to riding and we will be praying for him and for all of you. Please keep us posted on how your son is doing.


Bill Barnard

Sorry to hear about your son. Please keep us posted.

All I have to say is yes its worth it and that i feel where your coming from. I'm seventeen and broke my back over summer and now have two ten inch rods in my back. But the thing that sucks is that it wasn't doing something i loved like riding, instead it was me wearing a lap belt only (won't get into a car if thats all thats available now) with one of my friends goofing off behind the wheel and going off the road. And I have to let you know, lying in that hospital not being able to move for two weeks, the one thing that i missed the most and prayed for the most that I would still be able to do was riding. When the doctor said i would be able to walk again and most likely make a full recovery, that was the happiest day of my life. Im not sure how I would feel if I was your son, if I would want to ride again if I could, but it really does help you get through it if you have a goal that you really are striving for. So if he expresses the want to ride again, i would say ride on. I only hope your son's recovery will be as good as mine has been so far, like they say doctors these days can do wonderful things. My projection for the back brace was six months but two and half months later, guess what, I'm braceless and finally able to walk again under my own actually able to do things that i thought would be undoable almost three months later. My break was in L2 with that vertibrate being crushed to 50% and L1 and L2 to 75% with bone fragments also in the canal. That was the main reason we did the surgery instead of a body cast and i am very glad now that i did it, plus I have a gnarly scar now on my back:). Im probably going on too much about me but positive results is what i liked to hear in the hospital so hopefully this could give him a little hope for the future. Its about three months post surgery and I'm going to school now, enjoying life as much as I can(only wish Garret could say the same), and just waiting for when the doctor gives me the thumbs up and you know ill be at the track that weekend.

Also, ive been lurking around here for awhile but really never found a reason to register since this is such a great group and my questions have already been answered before, but i just felt this was a good chance to give back a little and maybe give someone hope. Just praying for your son's full recovery.

-Brian ( Thank You Dr. Reynolds)

'98 YZ 400f and a tricked out Isuzu Trooper

-In remembrance of Garret-


Thank you for all your support.

Your thoughts and prayers worked.

My son Wesley will not required surgery as of now. The Doc has put him on 4 weeks of bedrest. Must remain flat with only 10% lift. He has complete body functions working properly. Doc will reevaluate in 5 weeks. (Now Home school for 6 weeks. I'll be suprised if Mom doesn't issue me those duties, speaking of duties he's bed ridden and mom says I'm the head Bed Pan Man? I don't know why shes laughing at me?)

He has lost some sporting activities (ie MX, and Snowboarding) he can not take any compression without major consequences.

The damage results as of today, crushed one vertabrate, fratured two verts (L1 & T12? I think?) The compressed Vertabrate is 1/4" below spinal coloum, but is 51% misplaced? The Doc says normally 50% requires surgery, but suggests no surgery at this time. Hoping the kid is resilant.

All kids bikes for sale :)

Mom can not take the stress anymore, three strikes your out! (too many injuries to list)

I will not be able to ride with buddies (Sons via Mom), but, we still can Ski/Wakeboard, Golf and Hockey together.

I'm VERY grateful!

Thanks for all the SUPPORT.

Richard Marion

PS, My 250F will be getting a big brother very soon! :D

I think I see a Red Z50 in the future! They can't get hurt on a 50, can they...................

Great news on your son's recovery. It looks like the prayers are being answered. I know its easy to say (write) that "it's worth it", but in our sons' relationship sense, it's priceless, I think. I have 2 active boys, 17 and 14. They have had injuries from doing things their old man used to be good at (I do a lot of.."when I was your age" stuff). But no injury as serious as your son. Still, it does hurt and I feel guilty when they get injured because it almost feels like they are trying to prove to me that they can do it. But you know, our sons are talking, learning and loving us. And, they were there doing what they loved doing. So please don't feel bad. I know... easy to say. We feel for you and your wife. I bet, though, that you will have three great gentlemen in a few years! I think I need to go and hang out with my sons, now...


p.s. please let your wife know that my wife really enjoys the people involved in bike racing, more than people in other sports my sons are involved in. Just reading about MotoMan, MotoDad and others in TT kind of reinforces that, I think.

Sorry to hear about your son...please let us know how he's doing. I have a son that will be 5 this spring and me and my wife were thinking about getting him a PW to race. That's fine...what I'm worried about is when he gets older and on bigger bikes. No one wants to see there kids get hurt, but in this sport it's bond to happen. Is it worth it?...I've been asking that question to myself over and over the last few months. When someone comes up with a good answer let me know.

Good luck with your sons recovery. Every now and then something like this happens and we need to put things into perspective. Some people need to slow down on the track, we're not all pros, jumping all of the big doubles isn't for everybody, but being able to enjoy life normally is. Riding motocross bikes is the most fun, but I wish everyone to stay safe and keep it fun. Good luck and stay positive.

Marion, I'm happy your boy is going to make a full recovery.

Back in the day I used to go to the races with a buddy and his dad. His dad was a big no nonsense type of guy. I remember more than once he would make us load back up and go home because of the dust. He would get right up in the promoters face and ask how you could run a race with no water.

Maybe thats what todays dads should do. Why should amateur MX throw people 20 feet up in the air. Just look at some of the posts on this board. Teenagers seriously injured and worse. Not being able to ride with your kids sucks.

As parents we have no one to blame but ourselves. I don't think we would let our kids play russian roulette.

Let me get off the soapbox, it looks like the rain is letting up and I gotta go riding. :)

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