The guttural roar can be heard chewing up the road and spitting it out. Heaven has new representation now as the Templar Knights trade in their lances and trusty battle steeds for motorcycles to uphold their chivalric code. Their Latin cry, “In hoc signo vinces!” or, “In this sign you will conquer!” rises on the winds.
Xavier “Mayhem” Gutierrez, a sophomore majoring in English, joined the Templar Knights Motorcycle Club this past year. A friend mentioned it to him during his hunt for a motorcycle group. Attending a meet and greet in April 2011, Gutierrez was surprised and delighted by the diversity of the group.
“They’re from all walks of life – police officers, plumbers,” Gutierrez said. “It’s a blast.”
Formalized in March 2010, the club, though based in the Grand Lodge in Pleasant Grove, UT, has chapters all over the world, in Ohio, Hawaii, Connecticut, Texas, Arizona, Sweden and Netherlands.
The group’s insignia, the traditional Templar Red Cross on a white field, suggests the very strict membership requirements. One must adhere to state and federal laws, own a motorcycle under their guidelines (500 cc’s and up), have no felony convictions, ties to hate groups, gangs or terrorists, nor have a dishonorable discharge from the military.
“We’re looking for upstanding guys,” Gutierrez said.
The Club follows the Chivalric Code of Honor: Fortitude, Prudence, Honor and Temperance. This allows the group to maintain their high ethical standards in order to perform the charity work the club centers around.
“The activities that we engage in are community driven,” said “Hollywood,” a senior member with the auspicious title of Grand Captain who drives a Kawasaki Vulcan 1500 Classic. The club organizes and participates in fundraising efforts for autism, cancer and children in need of expensive surgeries, to name a few.
The club’s most important event of the year is the Fallen Patriot Ride, which occurs on Memorial Day weekend every year. On May 26 of this year, in conjunction with the Folds of Honor Foundation, the club will raise money to benefit the families of soldiers who have been killed or injured while serving their country.
Sponsorships and donations are accepted from community businesses and inhabitants, and an entry fee for motorcycle enthusiasts who wish to participate in the Charity Ride.
Gutierrez has immensely enjoyed his time with the Templar Knights.
“I’ve already put on 12,000 miles on my bike, just at events and rides over the Spring and Summer,” Gutierrez said. He has plans to trade in his 2006 Honda Shadow for a 2008 Harley Davidson Street Bob in the coming days.
By Keyra Kristoffersen