The Unsung Heroes of Sturgis

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The Unsung Heroes of Sturgis


By: Governor Kristi Noem

August 11, 2023


I didn’t think I’d find so much Jesus at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.  He’s everywhere all the time, but I didn’t expect to feel his presence at a pancake breakfast at the Buffalo Chip. He was clearly there when the Sons of Light Ministry graciously hosted hundreds of guests, including myself and Lawrence Jones from Fox and Friends. The Sons of Light witnessed by serving a free breakfast to all who came, sharing songs of praise, and just joining in fellowship.


South Dakotans are a tight-knit bunch. We look out for one another. We lend a hand when a neighbor is in need. We go the extra mile. And we witness Christ’s love to those around us.


After attending the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, I want to recognize folks like the Sons of Light – the unsung heroes of Sturgis.


There’s one thing that is pretty critical to a successful Rally – working motorcycles. Throughout the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, mechanics were working all hours of the day and night to make sure that bikes were ready to ride. I paid a visit to Black Hills Harley Davidson and saw just how hard those mechanics work. I am grateful to them for making sure my bike was in great condition, and I know they saved the day for a lot of people throughout the Rally.


Anyone who has been to the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally knows that it can get rowdy. That’s part of the fun – until it goes too far. Our law enforcement officers make sure that everyone can stay safe while participating in all the activities that the Rally has to offer.


In a time when there are entire states turning their backs on hard-working law enforcement officers, I am proud that South Dakota stands with ours. Those men and women in uniform are essential every single year to a safe and successful Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.


Our first responders also deal with a lot during the Rally. Thousands of bikers from all over the United States – and even from other countries – all flock to the Black Hills of South Dakota. That leads to some bizarre incidents. I’m sure that our first responders received some calls that they may not have experienced before. Nonetheless, they always showed up. They did what they do every single time – they went above and beyond the call of duty to help those in need.


I could go on and on about these unsung heroes. They are truly the backbone of South Dakota. They create the kind of atmosphere that makes people want to come back year after year. They make Sturgis an event for the whole family. I met a lot of people who brought their family members with them – dads and sons, spouses, grandfathers and grandkids, and even moms and daughters – all spending time together making memories.


In South Dakota, we celebrate these folks. We are grateful for them every day. And we show them the respect that they deserve.


Thank you to all of the unsung heroes of the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally for your hard work. It’s because of you that we can continue the legacy of this Rally and celebrate faith, family, and Freedom. I’m already looking forward to next year – when the fastest and the Freest event in America revs up again!