Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association
Chapter 18-3 History
COMBAT VETERANS MOTORCYCLE ASSOCIATION
The Knoxville Chapter of the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association (CVMA) began its journey toward becoming an official Chapter as a Detachment of the Nashville Chapter (18-1) in 2010. There were nine members on the Detachment’s roster with Mike “Grumpy” Mitt acting as its first Commander. Detachment 18-1-1 met for its first meeting on July 3, 2010 at Cracker Barrel in Morristown, TN with three members present; Bradley “Reddogbyker” Perry, Donnie “Hucklebuck” Honaker, and Dave “Boats” Bradley. Grumpy resigned his Command prior to the first meeting and Boats was elected the new Commander by the other two members present; despite having nominated Reddogbyker for the position. Reddogbyker replaced Boats as the Detachment Commander in the next few months.
On November 9, 2011 the Detachment met full membership qualifications and became the 100th CVMA Chapter under the designation of 18-3. The number 18 represents the State of Tennessee and 3 signifies it as the third Chapter in the State. The first official meeting of CVMA 18-3 occurred the same day at Puleo’s restaurant in Strawberry Plains, TN where the first board members of the Chapter were elected. Spencer “Reddogbyker” Perry became the first Chapter Commander with John “Tinker” Fuller acting as Executive Officer, David “Yaz” Yassemedis as Secretary, and Dave “Boats” Bradley as Treasurer.
-Dave Bradley, interview by Jeremy Norton, Knoxville, Tn and Tucson, AZ, October 7, 2017.
Richard “Reddogbyker” Perry led the Chapter until 2014, establishing 18-3 as an associating dedicated to assisting Veterans in the East Tennessee region. During his tenure, the Chapter experienced dramatic growth and increased activity. Reddogbyker relinquished Command in July 2014 and Donny “Sarge” Moore was elected as the new Chapter Commander. During this period Chapter meetings were primarily held at the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 1733 in Knoxville, TN. Unfortunately, Sarge was involved in a motorcycle accident the following year and stepped down as Chapter Commander in order to recover and pursue other opportunities. He was replaced as Commander by his Executive Officer (XO) John “Tinker” Fuller.
Despite a common goal of assisting Veterans in the region, the Chapter soon experienced a period of division and turmoil as various philosophies of how to best accomplish our mission clashed. Chapter 18-3 faced the possibility of losing its designation as a Chapter of the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Associating due to not maintaining an official set of Chapter bylaws. Ultimately, an official set of bylaws was drafted, amended, and approved.
A New Beginning
In March of 2016, a new set of Chapter Officers was elected following a contentious election at the Chapter’s annual meeting. Gary "Buckshot" Woodby was elected as Chapter Commander with Paul “Viper” Adkins as XO, Darrell "Buddy" Wallace as Sergeant At Arms, Larry "Joker" Gant as Secretary and Andy “Captain America” Davenport as Treasurer. Buddy "MacGyver" Johnson replaced Captain America as Treasurer the following year and Roy "Sky Raider" Burleson was appointed as the Chapter’s Public Relations Officer (PRO).
Under Buckshot’s leadership, the new team of Officers ushered in a period of dramatic growth and increased participation within the Chapter. With a focus on family and CVMA’s mission of “Vets Helping Vets,” the chapter was able to pull itself out of the turmoil of the previous years and assist countless Veterans in East Tennessee and elsewhere.