South Bend family hosts annual charity event to raise biker awareness

By  | 

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - In 2018, 112 motorcyclists died in Indiana, and more than 130 were killed in Michigan. Now, a South Bend mom is working to bring awareness to biker safety in honor of her son.

"We celebrate his birthday still, Easter, we have a garden out back for him because he's not buried anywhere," Sandy Kazmierczak said.

Five years ago on Easter Sunday, her son, 20-year-old Domnik Kazmierczak, was heading home after a family gathering.

"My son said, 'Mom, I'm just going to go for one last ride today,'" she recalled. "I said, 'OK,' and he never made it home."

It was at the corner of Butternut Road and Edison Road where his mom says a 17-year-old girl pulled out in front of Domnik. His family said he was an experienced rider and was wearing a helmet that day.

"We try to stay as close as a family and try to stay positive as much as we can and remember him," added Douglas Kazmierczak, his father.

Since the crash, Domnik's family has hosted a benefit each year for biker awareness. The sixth annual Ride and Charity Event will happen Saturday, Aug. 10. Anyone is welcomed to ride, drive or participate.

All proceeds are given to local charities, such as Christmas Commandos.

"Bikes are out there. We're out there, you see them all the time. Take your time, be careful, look. Look twice, look three times if you have to. Make sure there's no bike present," Sandy said.

The Poker Run & Charity event