The Federation of European Motorcyclists' Associations (FEMA) regrets to announce that it's former General Secretary Simon Milward passed away following a road accident on the 4th of march 2005 near the city of Kayes in Mali (Africa). Simon was fourty years old.
Simon Charles Milward was born on the 28th of january 1965 in Strete, South Devon, United Kingdom.
In 1989 Simon quit as quality control manager with a leading British reprographic printing company to concentrate on something he believed in and where he thought he could do something useful. Simon started a fulltime career working for the interests of motorcyclists with the Motorcycle Action Group United Kingdom.
In 1992 Simon established the Brussels headquarters of the Federation of European Motorcyclists (FEM) in Brussels and became FEM's General Secretary. Finding his way through the EU maze he started co-ordinating efforts towards specific legislatory targets. This resulted in bikers being among the first citizens to benefit from the democratic changes of the Maastricht Treaty and due to Simon's never ending work, FEM became a well-known and effective lobby group in the EU institutions. In 1998 FEM merged with the EMA (the European Motorcyclists Association) to form the Federation of European Motorcyclists' Associations (FEMA). Simon Milward became FEMA's General Secretary. Affiliated to FEMA today are 22 national riders rights organisations from 18 European countries.
On january 1st 2000 Simon left Europe to fulfil a lifelong dream: to ride his handmade motorcycle around the world on a humanitarian mission. His journey was supposed to last for 18 months, but it turned into a five year long odyssey. Simon was expected to arrive back in the UK around october 2005.
With the passing away of Simon Milward, the European motorcycle community has lost a true rider and a pioneer in the riders' rights movement. Simon always inspired those who have had the honour and the privilege to work with him and we will never forget him. We have lost a friend.
Our thoughts are with Simon's family and friends.
As a side note we would like to express our personal condolences from everyone at Bikeland. Kiwi and I spent some time with Simon on his stopover in Vancouver, and rode with him through part of Washington state. A sad and terrible loss.
An excerpt from Simon's Journals: ( Direct Link )
Just to make it clear, this Ride is raising money for the Dutch office of Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) and Health for All. The latter deals with medicines delivery by economical motorcycle. This idea was pioneered successfully by Riders for Health who work in many African countries, and who recently received a British award for best run charity. I had started to raise money for RfH, but since found there was also a great need in Asia. So with all current sponsors agreement, and the blessing of Riders for Health, we directed our efforts to a new pilot project in Flores Indonesia. So donators are now choosing between Medecins sans Frontieres and Health for All.
I always felt lucky after an accident when an ambulance would come along, scrape me up, cart me off to hospital, mend my bones, and send me out again. At those times I thought of fellow human beings in countries where no healthcare exists. That is why I am raising money for medical causes.
www.bikeland.org brought my ride to the attention of bikers around the US which has resulted in a number of fundraising events being planned. Various State ABATE groups are also organising things.
If you know of any clubs or groups (non-riders included) in the US who may be interested in seeing my 'interesting inspirational' fundraising picture show, email me and ask for the Description. As for when, sometime before December!
Take care eh?
More details about Simon and his around the world trip can be found on his website:
You can sign the online book of condolences here: