2nd Jul 2012 - ‘Tsunami bike’ heading for H-D Museum™
It drifted for more than a year in an insulated cargo van container, propelled by wind and tide, more than 4,000 miles across the Pacific Ocean. When it finally washed ashore on the coast of British Columbia, Canada, the 2004 Harley-Davidson® FXSTB Softail® Night Train™ motorcycle showed the full effects of its remarkable journey. It was beaten, battered, corroded, and seemingly beyond repair. But it still bore its original license plate from Japan, where it was washed to sea by the devastating tsunami that struck that island nation on March 11, 2011.
When Canadian Peter Mark found the bike, he knew he needed to try to track down the original owner. Working with news agencies and representatives from Deeley Harley-Davidson Canada and Harley-Davidson Japan, contact was made with 29-year-old Ikuo Yokoyama, who lost his home and three of his family members in the disaster. Yokoyama declined an offer from Harley-Davidson to restore the motorcycle and return it to him, suggesting instead that the bike should go to the Harley-Davidson Museum to honor the more than 15,000 who perished, along with countless others whose lives changed forever.
“The Museum is honoured to receive this amazing motorcycle to ensure that its condition is preserved and can be displayed as a memorial to the Japan tsunami tragedy,” said Bill Davidson, Vice President of the Harley-Davidson Museum.