Patriot Guard Rider Helps 90-Year-Old Southwest Washington Woman Check Item Off Bucket List


A 90-year-old resident in Ridgefield checked one item off her bucket list before her move to a retirement home.

On Oct. 6, Delores Hawkins was able to go on a motorcycle ride as her neighbors gathered to cheer her on.

“I was getting my hearing aids checked, and this nice gentleman from Battle Ground came and he had a big motorcycle,” Hawkins said. “So we were talking about it and I said ‘I fell in love with Ridgefield because my husband had a boat here,’ and he said ‘do you like motorcycles better than boats?’ and I said ‘a little.’ And he said, ‘I would love to come and take you for a ride.’”

Dave Boyce, of the Patriot Guard Riders, took Hawkins on a ride on his motorcycle around Ridgefield for 30 minutes before he dropped her back off at home. Neighbors eagerly awaited their return.

“I really enjoyed it and (Boyce) is the one that gets the credit. I’m just a grandma and a great-grandma and a great-great-grandma, and I don’t know why I wanted a motorcycle ride, but I enjoyed every bit of it,” Hawkins said with a laugh. “It was the getting on and off that was hard.”

She said she would do it again, but “I just don’t want to go on the freeway.”

“I’m scared to go on the freeway with a car,” Hawkins said.

Another item Hawkins wants to check off her bucket list is ziplining, but she’s not ready to take on that adventure quite yet.

“The motorcycle ride did it for me,” she said.

Hawkins’ friend and neighbor, Wendy Dawdy, was excited to witness the ride but was sad about Hawkins’ upcoming move.

“She is just going to be moving out of our neighborhood next week and we are going to be so sad to see her go after all these years,” Dawdy said. “What a wonderful citizen and community member she’s been, taking care of all the children, making quilts and hats for babies for many, many years.”

Dawdy said Hawkins’ husband, Merlin, was a firefighter for 30 years and started the Ridgefield Lions Club.

“She’s just precious to all of us,” Dawdy said. “We’re going to miss her.”

Hawkins still helps the community to this day. She recently donated hats, baby blankets and lap robes to people in need.

“I took stuff down and I had made up sacks with baby blankets in it and teddy bears and color books and things like that,” Hawkins said, noting she plans to give the items to the sheriff’s office. “I’m only going to do three this year, but we’ll make them up for children that are in trouble at Christmas, and I think that’s the one thing I’m proud of. … If I’m not keeping my hands busy, then I’m in trouble.”

Dawdy laughed at Hawkins’ comment and added, “Idle hands are the devil’s workshop.”

Hawkins also acknowledged how supportive her family has been. She broke her hip three months ago.

“I should have gone for a walk that day instead of watering my plants that day,” Hawkins said. “That’s what got me in trouble.”

Hawkins is looking forward to her move into assisted living, especially because people will cook for her there.