Twenty-four motorcycles. Fifty years of riding. As Hayden Honda celebrates 50 years of selling Hondas, long-time customer Keith Welty celebrates 50 years of Riding Red.
Welty, of Syracuse, IN, purchased his first motorcycle in October 1964. Since then, he’s driven exclusively Honda motorcycles.
In 1975, Welty bought his first motorcycle, a CB200, from Hayden Honda. Seventeen motorcycles later, he’s still a regular customer.
“I enjoy the company over here,” Welty said. “I’ve made lots of friends.” Hayden Honda employees know Welty well. He’s even taken some out to dinner for their birthdays.
“He’s been more than just another customer,” Hayden Honda owner Kurt Hayden said. “Everyone here knows him.”
Welty’s never been able to get a car license. After an accident when he was a few months old, he became “special needs.” His father tried teaching him to drive a car, but it stressed him out too much. He doesn’t feel that way on a motorcycle.
“I ride all over,” Welty said. “If the roads are nice, I’m out.”
His motorcycles have run from his smallest, a Trail 90, to his largest, a Shadow 600. Welty rode the Shadow the longest, 9 years. He enjoyed the storage space and how it traveled long distances. His favorite motorcycle, though, was his Honda Reflex.
“I loved that bike,” Welty said. “It didn’t catch the wind.” It also had plenty of space to store the papers and Bible he often carried with him.
Currently, Welty has to drive a Honda Ruckus moped due to changes in Indiana law. He was one of 16 in the state who carried a motorcycle-only license before the change. The law now requires a regular driver’s license, which Welty can’t get, to operate motorcycles over 49cc.
“I had to drop down,” Welty said. “People still ask me where my yellow one is.”
In celebration of Hayden Honda’s 50th anniversary, Kurt Hayden would like to give Welty a new Honda Ruckus. Of the $3200 price, Welty’s trade and Hayden Honda’s donation leaves a balance of $1000. Please consider donating through the button below!