Santa Rosa Mile

Godspeed, Danny Rouit

| 20 December 2016 11:17 am

Dan Rouit Memorial
The Dan Rouit Flat Track Museum

Story by Karen Gould
Photos by Karen Gould/Checkered Flag Photography and Peter Starr
CLOVIS, CA, DEC. 4, 2016

The Dan Rouit Flat Track Museum in Clovis, California, hosted a crowd that spilled out into the street. They had all come to honor Danny Rouit.

Danny passed away on November 16, 2016.

The crowd spilled out into the street. Photo by Karen Gould

The crowd spilled out into the street. Photo by Karen Gould

All of them had come to pay their respects to Danny Rouit. Photo by Peter Starr

All of them had come to pay their respects to Danny Rouit. Photo by Peter Starr

The Trailblazers worked hard to make this event happen. Photo by Karen Gould

The Trailblazers worked hard to make this event happen. Photo by Karen Gould

Dan Rouit (right) with Nolan Reitz in 2013. Photo by Karen Gould

Dan Rouit (right) with Nolan Reitz in 2013. Photo by Karen Gould

Confined to a wheelchair after an accident while hiking with Steve Burkett and friends when was young, Danny found a way to stay involved. He had a deep passion for motorcycle racing that led him to create the Dan Rouit Flat Track Museum. The museum houses motorcycle-racing history, both flat track and speedway, with a collection of bikes, pictures, and paraphernalia going back many years. Visited by thousands of people over the years, the museum is well known by racing enthusiasts all over the country.

Steve Beckett (center) was with Danny the day he fell a hundred feet while hiking. Photo by Karen Gould

Steve Beckett (center) was with Danny the day he fell a hundred feet while hiking. Photo by Karen Gould

Rod Lake shared heartfelt stories of his endless adventures with Danny, of how they met and the path they took as their friendship flourished. Hundreds of Danny’s longtime friends and his loyal and loving wife, Kathy, looked on while Rod shared some of the stories of Danny’s life. Rod shared how thrilled Danny was on the best day of his life – the day he and Kathy got married. Through the years, Kathy was a true champion in Danny’s life, walking with him by his side.

Rod Lake shared stories of his times with Danny. Photo by Karen Gould

Rod Lake shared stories of his times with Danny. Photo by Karen Gould

A lifelong friend of Dan Rouit, Rod Lake made an impassioned speech about what Dan had done for the benefit of the Flat Track community. Photo by Peter Starr

A lifelong friend of Dan Rouit, Rod Lake made an impassioned speech about what Dan had done for the benefit of the Flat Track community. Photo by Peter Starr

Danny enjoyed a deep connection with God and was an active member in his neighborhood church. Jerry Carlson and some of his other friends from church shared stories, a poem and a song that illustrated Danny’s faith and the passion that strengthened him each day.

Jerry Carlson shared Dan’s love of God with a poem. Photo by Karen Gould

Jerry Carlson shared Dan’s love of God with a poem. Photo by Karen Gould

Another friend shared a song. Photo by Karen Gould

Another friend shared a song. Photo by Karen Gould

A feast of food and fellowship was shared by all. Photo by Karen Gould

A feast of food and fellowship was shared by all. Photo by Karen Gould

Camaraderie and cuisine. Photo by Peter Starr

Camaraderie and cuisine. Photo by Peter Starr

Speedway superstar Eddie Castro hams it up with a Japanese speedway bike. Photo by Peter Starr

Speedway superstar Eddie Castro hams it up with a Japanese speedway bike. Photo by Peter Starr

Sammy Tanner with Shel Tuitt’s Royal Enfield that Sammy rode in 1966. Photo by Peter Starr

Sammy Tanner with Shel Tuitt’s Royal Enfield that Sammy rode in 1966. Photo by Peter Starr

Bob Bellino, Jim Odom, Tom Seymour and Chris Carter. Photo by Peter Starr

Bob Bellino, Jim Odom, Tom Seymour and Chris Carter. Photo by Peter Starr

Bob Bellino, Jim Odom, Peter Starr and Chris Carter. Photo courtesy of Peter Starr

Bob Bellino, Jim Odom, Peter Starr and Chris Carter. Photo courtesy of Peter Starr

Digger Helm and Jim Odom. Photo by Peter Starr

Digger Helm and Jim Odom. Photo by Peter Starr

Ernie Aragon is reunited with his old Honda dirt tracker. Photo by Peter Starr

Ernie Aragon is reunited with his old Honda dirt tracker. Photo by Peter Starr

More in the museum…   Photo by Karen Gould

More in the museum… Photo by Karen Gould

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

While it is sad that the racing community has lost one of its stars, Danny now rests in peace, racing with his buddies on that big track above.

The museum will remain open through the May 21, 2017, as an open house with the support of Rod Lake and Digger Helm. In the meantime, folks can continue to visit the museum by appointment, calling Kathy to prearrange their visits.

The Dan Rouit Flat Track museum is located at 309 West Rialto Avenue in Clovis, California. For more information, please call 559/291-2242.

Rest in peace, Danny Rouit. You will be missed by many.

Photo by Peter Starr

Photo by Peter Starr

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Category: Flat Track, Riders, Riders All, Speedway

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