West Coast Thunder (WCT) first originated in May of 2000. Founded by Pat Delahunty, Steve Cifelli, Steve Aragon, George Helton, Lucky & Theresa Delaney, Rich Greenberg, and D. J. Quinn. Delahunty first thought of the idea in May of 1999 while watching the documentary “Letters from the Trenches”. The following day, he called some of his fellow Inland Empire H.O.G.® chapter members, and they organized a small ride to the Riverside National Cemetery (RNC) to participate in their annual remembrance ceremony. After the ceremony, they decided to make the ride a tradition.
With the financial support from the Harley-Davidson dealership in Riverside, California, the tradition grew in stride, doubling attendance each year. To this date, West Coast Thunder and donated in excess of $1.2 Million to the Riverside National Cemetery Support Committee. These donations help build monuments and provide ancillary support resources for the Riverside National Cemetery.
Each Year upwards of 7,500 motorcyclists pack the street of Indiana Avenue in Riverside, California to observe and participate in the tradition of West Coast Thunder.
Proceeds will benefit the Riverside National Cemetery Support Committee via the West Coast Thunder [a 501 (c) (3) non-profit corporation]. West Coast Thunder continues to be the major contributor of funds to the Riverside National Cemetery. Completed projects include construction of the National POW / MIA Memorial (dedicated in 2005), repairs to the Medal of Honor Memorial, financial support to the RNC Memorial Honor Detail, and funding each July of the Concert for Heroes.
These financial gifts have funded cemetery projects to include the purchasing of flower cones and assist in the monthly burials of our indigent and unaccompanied, homeless Veterans by the placing of a bouquet of flowers and an American flag on their final resting place. For more information about the third largest National Cemetery in the United States, which averages over 31 burials per day, and is a proud, volunteered-based , please visit www.rncsc.org.