Two lucky US military members received a great Christmas present – a 2011 Victory Vegas 8-Ball! Victory Motorcycles gave away the bikes to show its appreciation and support of our military through programs like Operation Gratitude and Hometown Hereos.
Working with Calif.-based Operation Gratitude, Victory sent the keys to the first of these two motorcycles inside the 600,000th care package delivered overseas by General James Amos, Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, on behalf of the charity. Operation Gratitude volunteers sealed the keys to the bike in the landmark care package in Van Nuys, Calif. on December 11, beginning a two-week journey to the Sangin District of the Helmand Province in Afghanistan. There, a Lance Corporal with the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines (also known as the “Dark Horse Battalion”) discovered the keys to the new motorcycle on Christmas Day, along with letters of appreciation, hygiene products, DVDs, and other typically donated items for Operation Gratitude packages. The recipient will receive his bike when his battalion returns to Camp Pendleton later in 2011.
“Victory is always looking for meaningful ways to thank those serving in the military and our veterans,” said Victory Motorcycles General Manager Steve Menneto. “The opportunity to partner with Operation Gratitude and donate one of our motorcycles to the organization’s 600,000th care package means a lot to our company. We encourage everyone to continue finding ways to thank our troops for all they sacrifice in service to our country.”
This is the first time in Victory’s partnership with Operation Gratitude that the company has donated a motorcycle. Earlier this year, Victory invited the public to support military personnel by dropping off items for Operation Gratitude at Victory dealerships.
In addition to donating a motorcycle to Operation Gratitude’s efforts during the recent holiday season, Victory also gave away a second, brand-new 2011 Victory Vegas 8-Ball to Jonathan Hartt, T1/E-6 of the U.S. Navy. News of Hartt receiving the bike was the culmination of Victory’s Hometown Heroes initiative. Beginning in December, Victory encouraged friends and family of members of the military to submit short videos explaining why their loved one was a Hometown Hero. Victory invited the public to vote on the entries and the video submitted by Hartt’s wife and three children, explaining why he was their hero, received more votes than any other submission. The gift of a 2011 Victory was a thank you to Hartt for his efforts to serve our country and for setting a heroic example for his family and friends.
“Across the globe, there are men and women who have served or are serving in our military that are Hometown Heroes,” said Menneto. “Honoring these people, not just for their service to our country, but also for what they do to make the lives of those around them better each day, provided the motivation to launch an initiative like Victory’s Hometown Heroes. We’re proud of all of our troops, and couldn’t be happier to give away a bike as a sign of our appreciation.”
Both of the motorcycles feature a special military badge, giving a unique twist to the sleek-looking, all-black bikes. Including the badge on these motorcycles is Victory’s way of publicly honoring the recipients and thanking these individuals for their service.
Victory’s partnership with Operation Gratitude and Victory’s Hometown Heroes initiative are just two components of Victory’s ongoing support for military personnel and veterans. Military personnel who ride Victory Motorcycles are featured regularly in Victory Rider magazine and on the Victory website (www.victorymotorcycles.com), and all military personnel and veterans are invited to pick up their free Victory Military Rider Pins from any Victory dealer.
Victory Motorcycles is a division of Polaris (NYSE:PII). With annual 2009 sales of $1.6 billion, Polaris designs, engineers, manufactures and markets off-road vehicles (ORVs), including all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and the Polaris RANGER, snowmobiles and Victory motorcycles for recreational and utility use and has recently introduced a new on-road electric powered neighborhood vehicle.
Polaris is a recognized leader in the snowmobile industry; and one of the largest manufacturers of ORVs in the world. Victory motorcycles established in 1998 and representing the first all-new American-made motorcycle from a major company in nearly 60 years, are rapidly making impressive in-roads into the cruiser and touring motorcycle marketplace. Polaris also enhances the riding experience with a complete line of Pure Polaris apparel, accessories and parts, available at Polaris dealerships.
Polaris Industries Inc. trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “PII,” and the Company is included in the S&P MidCap 400 stock price index.
Information about the complete line of Polaris products, apparel and vehicle accessories are available from authorized Polaris dealers or anytime from the Polaris homepage at www.polarisindustries.com
About Operation Gratitude
Operation Gratitude annually sends 100,000+ care packages filled with snacks, entertainment items and personal letters of appreciation addressed to individually named U.S. Service Members deployed in harm’s way. The organization’s mission is to lift morale, bring a smile to a service member’s face and express to our Armed Forces the appreciation and support of the American people. Each package contains donated product valued at $125 and costs the organization $15 to assemble and ship. For safety and security, assembling of packages occurs at the Army National Guard armory in Van Nuys, California. Since its inception in 2003, Operation Gratitude volunteers have shipped more than 600,000 packages to American Military deployed overseas.