‘A shoulder to lean on,’ dozens of motorcyclists offer support to family of fallen rider

Local News

Dozens of people raise nearly $2,000 for Jarrade Smith's family

Dozens of people showed up to a bar in East Moline tonight to support the family of a motorcycle rider.

Jarrade Smith died Monday night in a motorcycle accident at the intersection of 14th and Harrison streets in Davenport.

He was 26 years old.

Hundreds of riders showed up to candlelight vigil in his honor last night.

They continued their support tonight with a fundraiser for Jarrade’s family.

Every Wednesday night at Fields Bar is bike night but this one was a little different.

“We’re going to do three or four 50/50 drawings to generate as much money as possible. We donated a gift basket, too, and a couple of other people donated gift baskets,” says Robert Fields owner Fields of Pizza and Fields Bar.

It’s a fundraiser for Jarrade, who was one of the bartender’s nephews.

Fields says with just one Facebook post, the support came flooding in; dozens of people shared the event and several people donated items for a silent auction.

“He just grew to be like a brother to me,” says Ashley Nicholson who met Jarrade two years ago.

Many other people at the fundraiser had never even met Jarrade.

“To see the amount people that come out and you know are just here for support and love and to be a shoulder to lean on, it’s awesome, it’s really helpful,” Nicholson says.

Nicholson is selling T-shirts to help Jarrade’s family with funeral expense.

A GoFundMe page also has been set up to help the family with funeral expenses.

They read, in part, “Someone I love is riding in heaven.”

“This kind of thing it’s expensive, you know, having to pay for a funeral and all of the stuff that comes along with it, it gets expensive and no one likes to do it alone,” Nicholson says.

Dozens of people drove in to show Jarrade’s loved ones that they aren’t alone.

“There’s a lot of things going on in the world today that separates and divides us and this is bringing us all together,” Fields says.

“The whole riding community, it’s really just a big family. Whether you know everyone in it or you know someone who knows someone, you know, everyone comes together when this kind of tragedy happens,” Nicholson says.

Organizers of bike night say this summer stands out for them with more fundraisers than usual: Three for bikers who have died in car accidents and another for a rider who died fighting breast cancer.

Fields Bar employees tell us they raised $1,937 for Jarrade’s family tonight.

This story hits close to home for us at Local 4 News.

Smith is the son of a colleague here at the station.

Davenport Police say the accident is still under investigation.

They say witnesses saw Smith speeding and driving recklessly.

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