Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Click Baldwin's spirit made him a legend

Click Baldwin lived a legendary life.

Baldwin, owner of the Carolina Harley-Davidson Buell motorcycle dealership in Gastonia, died Tuesday night from injuries he suffered when he crashed his motorcycle near Lolo, Montana.

Baldwin was riding with a group of friends from the Hamsters USA motorcycle club on the way to the 68th annual Sturgis Rally in South Dakota. As he pulled out to pass a 1999 Honda Civic the car turned left and Baldwin hit it with his 2009 Harley. He was taken to a hospital in Missoula for emergency surgery, but did not survive.

Baldwin was born in Salisbury, but he grew up in the little Gaston County town of Belmont. He, his wife, Diane, and their family built their motorcycle dealership into one of the top operations in the Southeast, and Baldwin was well known in motorcycle circles as an outstanding builder of custom bikes.

But what made the 54-year-old Baldwin truly legendary was his spirit.

He and NASCAR driver Kyle Petty were long-time friends, and Baldwin was part of the small group that helped inspire Petty's annual charity motorcycle ride across America.

"Back in 1995, he and I, along with a few other close friends, were just a group of guys that wanted to ride our motorcycles across the country," Petty said. "We found out that we could raise some money for charity while doing it and the Kyle Petty Charity Ride was born. While it had my name on it, Click was a driving force behind the ride."

Baldwin, whose actual first name was Clifton, took part in every one of the Petty rides, including one that wound up recently in Savannah, Ga. He did far more than ride in them, he helped organize them and worked tirelessly on them. He helped line up motorcycles for riders and pretty much did everything he could to make sure the rides were a success.

"Words cannot describe what Click Baldwin has meant to me, my family and the Victory Junction Gang Camp," Petty said. "There has never been a more giving human being. He was more than a friend, he was like a brother to me."

Baldwin had many friends in the NASCAR community. He sold them motorcycles and helped whenever and however he could in the causes they supported. He sponsored "poker runs" and other charity events for causes such as the Holy Angels nursery in his hometown of Belmont and gave freely of his time, his energy and his money when any of those things were needed.

Petty said it as good as anybody ever could.

"We've lost a great one," Petty said.


Anonymous said...

I am sorry for the loss of this man I didnt know. But I do believe you forgot to tell the whole story. He pass the car in a no passing zone. Also he was speeding. I say this due to the fact we all have a problem with people not seeing bikes in todays world. But this time it was the fault of the rider. All bikers should learn from this experience and obey all laws. The life you save may be your own. There is no place you have to be that cant wait a few secounds.
God speed rider
Conrad Sutton

Anonymous said...

My name is Jeanette Mosley. Click was my cousin and he was a good man. He and his family did so much good in the community. They helped more people than you will know. When something like this happens to a family, they do not need to be reminded of the bad at this time. Please try to respect them and keep the negative comments to yourself.

Thank you,

Jeanette Baldwin Mosley

Anonymous said...

The man made a mistake. That's all. Have you ever ridden down the interstate and looked at your speedometer and noticed you were going 56 mph in a 55 mph zone? I know you have.

With that said, Click simply made a mistake and paid dearly. There is a grieving widow and daughter left behind and the last thing they need is to find a story about their husband or daddy saying the writer did not tell the whole story.

The fact is Click was traveling to meet up with a group of riders when he came upon two cars stopped in the middle of the road. There was no oncoming traffic, just 2 cars stopped. Click made the fatal mistake of assuming one of the cars was having car trouble and decided to pass on the left as the car in fronmt of him had no signal light on. When he was making his pass he cleared the first car with no problem then he got to the car that had been holding up that point the 76 year old grandmother, who was not using her mirrors at all, decided she had sat long enough and decided to turn left, right into the path of my friend.

Personally, everyone over the age of 65 should have to take an annual driving test to prove they are still capable of driving safely and those over the age of 75should probably re-evaluate their need to drive very much at all and should defintely be clared medically in order to keep driving.

Anonymous said...

I didnt mean to make it a negative comment, It is just that the author of this article failed to tell the whole story. We as riders need to understand we are lower than a pedestrian. I wish I had met him. He sounded like a man who helped others. But we also need to learn from others mistakes. That is all I was saying.
To the family my condolences. The community lost what I see was a good man. But we all have to look at the big picture. There is no place worth breaking laws to gain a few mins. The life you save could be yours or mine.
Again god speed rider.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry for the loss of a great person. We bought our first motorcycle from Click & Diane back in the 80's which was a liberty edition lowrider and Click bought it back from us when we decided to sale it. What a wonderful man he was!!!
Again I am sorry for your loss....

Anonymous said...

Nice words, Mr. Poole. Thanks for sharing them.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry this man lost his life and am sorry for his family, but the person who posted trying to blame the woman driving the car is disgusting in my mind. He made a mistake and unfortunately it cost him his life and cost his family the grief they are facing now. To try to blame the driver of the car and blame her age for this horrible accident is not only irresponsible but absolutely disgusting to me.

To his cousin, I am sorry for your loss as well but again, if he had followed the law he would still be here. I do not think anyone is being disrespectful in any way, just pointing out the truth and facts of the matter. It was a horrible accident and it horrible that he lost his life in such a senseless matter.

To the person who posted at 7:04 trying to make excuses, you totally disgust me and unless you were there and were an eye witness, which I seriously doubt, you know nothing.

Anonymous said...

Ms. Mosely

I am very sorry for your loss. I did not know your cousin but from what I have read and heard he was a wonderful, caring person. You have my deepest sympathies.

To the person who is trying to blame the driver of the car for this horrible accident, please get your facts straight before you make horrible and false accusations:

Trooper: Illegal passing caused wreck

Baldwin was driving a 2009 Harley-Davidson motorcycle when he tried to pass a 1999 Honda Civic that was turning left from U.S. 12 into a Travelers' Rest campground, said Trooper Patrick McCarthy of the Montana Highway Patrol.

Baldwin crossed a double-yellow line indicating a no-passing zone on the two-lane highway, McCarthy said. The motorcycle struck the car from the rear while it turned.

The impact threw Baldwin off the bike, and he struck the pavement before hitting the post of a reduced speed ahead sign, McCarthy said.

The Honda driver, 74-year-old Joann Davidson of Missoula, and her 5-year-old granddaughter, who was in the car, sustained minor injuries and were driven to the hospital.

Baldwin's speed was estimated at 45 mph, McCarthy said.

"An independent witness said her turn signal was on, and it was in a no-passing zone," the trooper said.

This was a horrible accident and now a family is without their husband, father and a valuable member of the community is no longer here. I am appalled that someone is trying to pass the blame for this tragedy and my only guess is you were no friend of Chick's because everything I know about him he would never blame others for his mistakes and that is what this horrible accident was, a mistake. If you were really a friend you would not hide your identity in my opinion.

Again, Ms. Mosely, I am not trying to be disrespectful, I just have a problem with people lying about what really occurred and trying to blame an innocent victim.

Anonymous said...

So sorry for the loos and my prayers and heart goes out to this wonderful family. When I hear about a motorcycle accident, I always try to find out the cause of the accident because my family gives me a hard time since we are active Harley riders our self. Most of the accidents are the riders fault, You would be surprised at the research to see how many wreck involving motorcylces are the cause of the drivers. It is so sad to see the blame being put on the driver of the car. that is very wrong and she is going to have to live with this fact and her granddaugter will never forget it. Shame on you for putting the blame on the driver of the car. Thanks to the others for giving out the true information.

Tammy Hamilton said...

Growing up in the shadow of Plant Allen was where this kind gentle man lived as a child.We never knew that our beginnings would be considered humble.For click they never where. He never forgot where he came from or the people who knew him when. My deepest sympathy lies with all the Baldwin Family from Diane,Chelsey,Lynne and Christo his Harley Family both Famous and Infamous. You will be missed.From your Plant Allen family Godspeed Tammy Hamilton

Anonymous said...

You people should be ashamed of yourselves. A good man is gone, families and friends are suffering and all you want to do is gossip and speculate about details that you know nothing about and are irrelevant now. How about a simple "I'm sorry, and God bless everyone involved"? That's all that needs to be said.

Anonymous said...

My name is Leslie Tate Smith. My brother, Leonard Tate, known to most as just Tate, worked for Click and Diane in Gastonia for many years. Not only was Click a great employer, he was a good friend. Our family had the pleasure of getting to know he and his family, he was one of a kind. I don't really think the point that he made an err in judgement is as important as the man. All of us who knew and loved Click will miss him and hopefully many riders will learn from this. I feel sure he is riding on streets of gold, wind in his hair, a smile on his face. Click, we love you.

Anonymous said...

The people that need to be ashamed of themselves are the ones lying and trying to place the blame on others in this horrible tragedy. I agree, a good man was taken from his family, but I for one am not going to stand by and allow others to lying and distort the facts. From what I know of Chick I am sure he would be disgusted as well that others are blaming the victim in this.

By the way 10:04 you should stop being a hypocrite and take your own advice.

Anonymous said...

I Like Cheese!

Anonymous said...

I was a friend of Click's. As were hundreds, or more likely, thousands of others. Any one of you who SPECULATES on what happened in his accident should keep their opinions to themselves ( you know what is said about opinions). You don't know what happened, you were not there. I don't know what happened, I was not there. I have read the news reports, depending on which one you read you will get a few different stories, and I have read what the trooper said. I knew the minute I saw the video of the aftermath that what the majority of the news reports and what the trooper said happened, was not accurate. Remember, they were not there either and are just repeating what other people have told them because there has not been an accident investigation to give them a "most likely approximation". So how about not blaming anybody or putting fault where there are no facts?

I do know, like many of his friends and family, that getting that phone call Tuesday morning and the many updates I received throughout the day, to finally hear that night that we lost such a dear friend...if you were a friend of Click's, you know what words cannot explain.

Now is the time to send all your good wishes to his wife, daughter, family and friends for he was a kind, generous and funny man.

Now please people, if you are thinking about saying you are sorry, and just can't help yourself by throwing in that "but", STOP YOURSELF!

To all of the people whose lives were touched by this man my heart and thoughts are with you.

Just one of his Hamster family

Anonymous said...

Click was one-of-a-kind. He was a business associate and a friend. If you knew him, you knew his heart. Few words can describe Click and few words can express the pain of losing him. Anonymous posts are for cowards. Enough said.

Anonymous said...

I think you are exactly right. My thoughts and prayers are with you Diane, Chelsey and family.

Anonymous said...


You are a hypocrite and are doing exactly what you are demanding others not do. You were not there and yet you claim the officer is lying and you know what happened. Get over yourself and stop acting like you know it all. People like you disgust me hamster boy.

Anonymous said...

Hey 5:23, You sound really tough when you leave anonymous posts. Why don't you and the rest of the anonymous cowards go away so people can mourn the loss of their friend, share some memories and condolences to the family.

MadMax FTW said...

Forget placing blame on anyone, just be thankful your alive and well with your families.
May Click rest in peace.

Newnan GA

Anonymous said...

Just let the man rest in pease. HIs family doesn't need to hear all this crap!!!!! He was a good man.

Anonymous said...

I agree, let him rest in peace and let his family mourn. Also, do not point the finger of blame anywhere, this was an accident and making assumptions and acting like you know what happened like the person who posted they know the police were wrong are more wrong themselves and showing total disrespect.

Jim Markland and the other tough guys, if you respected Click then show some respect and STFU and let his family mourn and stop acting like a tough guy talking trash.

Anonymous said...

The Clicker was a great friend of mine and would enjoy your debate. However, he still wins. We will be at our jobs next week and he will be on the BIG RIDE with the BIG GUY.

His bud, The Judge

Darrell Poe Jr. said...

You know everybody makes mistakes. I have a friend get killed doing 160 on a crouch rocket! A Man drinking and driving pulled out in front of him. Who is to blame?? The fact is a man lost his life and his family lost a Father, Husband, and Friend. People need to respect his family by not acting like jerks. My God be with his family in their time of loss.

Anonymous said...

Having read the posts here and at Gaston Gazette (there is a link to send condolences to the family), I would have to recommend the Gazette. Most people there actually knew Click and/or his family, and have said beautiful things all in a positive nature; whereas here there seams to be a lot of preaching from people who did not know him. I was hoping to read stories from other friends of Click's, he had so many, gotta love a good Click story! But there isn't much here.

As the judge said "Clicker would enjoy your debate". You are right on! Click had a great sense of humor, and calling him "Clicker" tells me you really knew him well, there were a few, not a lot, that used that nickname.

Peace Out!

Anonymous said...

Oops... personal apology.

Sorry, Your Honor.

The Judge said --

Anonymous said...

Mark "POOCHY" Propes said
Cherri and I would like to send our deepest sympathies to Diane,Chelsey and his extended family at the shop.I met Click many years ago, shortly after I bought my first motorcycle.Click touched many peoples lives and I for one can honestly say for the "Better". Over the years I always looked forward to seeing and talking to Click at the many Events,Rallies and Swap Meets that we attended or worked.CLICK MY BROTHER YOU WILL DEFINATLY BE MISSED!We always tell each other to RIDE SAFE. So when your riding with the BIG GUY upstairs you do just that!!!!

Midland N.C.

Unknown said...

Folks, I just want to tell you all that when I wrote my blog about Click I wasn't writing a news story. The news of what happened, all of the stuff about how the wreck took place, was in our newspaper elsewhere. I was neither trying to assign or absolve blame in the wreck. That's for another forum. I wanted to remember Click, who I knew a little bit and who I knew people in the NASCAR community would want to hear about what happened in his wreck.

Anonymous said...

Click was THE MAN. One of a kind, and I've had the good fortune of meeting nearly everyone with a name in the Harley world. Those of you who are laying blame on ANYONE in this forum need to re-evaluate your priorities. This is not the time or place for that. A great guy has left us, a great family mourns, and our world is just a little more boring than it was. Godspeed, my brother.
I'd like to suggest donations be made to the Victory Junction camps in Click's name. He contributed so much to them over the years, I can think of no better way to help keep him with us.

Anonymous said...

I am a family member of Click that unfortunately had to get the horrible call on Tuesday. It was very hard to hear that he was holding onto life after a terrible accident. I am absolutely astonished that people would have such little respect for my family and our friends at a time like this. He was a good man. Yes, it was a mistake that caused him his life, but at a time like this you should celebrate the person that has passed.

To attempt to clear a few things up, there were two cars in front of him that were stopped. Yes he made a mistake, but in all honestly he did not know the other car had a turn signal on...he could not see it. I'm not excusing his judgement to do what he did, but the reports in all fairness do not give all the info, whether he did the right or wrong thing.

I would like to thank the Petty family for flying family and close friends to Montana at this difficult time. Click was a great friend. Please be kind and remember the good things that he has done to make it easier on our family...especilally for Diane and Chelsea.

Anonymous said...

Click has been a friend of my family before I was born.He was one of the most loving,caring,giving guys I have ever known!Please do not pass judgement!Let Him Rest In PEACE!LOVE&COMFORT FOR HIS FAMILY AND FRIENDS!Cindy Bass,South Point Rd.,Belmont N.C.

Anonymous said...

To Click's family and many, many friends my heart, prayers and sympathy go out to each of you. This is a horrible loss of a good person not only to his family but to his community as well.

I am a rider and very close to Click's age. I never had the opportunity to meet Click but have been in his dealership numerous times. I am aware of many of the good things that Click has done for his fellow person. Regardless of who is at fault my heart goes out as well to the lady driving her car with her grandaughter. There was a grandmother on an outing with her grandaughter, thats a beautiful thing. My 80 year old mother still drives and safely I may add and takes my 7 year old out with her. Both my Mom and my daughter cherish those times together and I am greatful of their relationship. My mom and my daughter would be horrified at such a tragic accident. I think that it would take them a long time to recover from the emotional wounds of a man losing his life, even if the accident is no fault of hers. Click was living his passion, the freedom of the wind in his hair and the open road. I think most of us that ride understand that passion and most of us have been guilty of taking chances that the end results could have been the same. Time will bring comfort to all. This is a crossroads that we all must face and what the family and friends of all involved need is compassion and understanding. Again, to The Carolina's Harley Davidson family and all the many friends that crossed life with Click Baldwin, the grandmother and her grandaughter my thoughts and prayers are with you.

Anonymous said...

I am praying for you Diane and Chelsea and for all the family and friends. Please people we are all humans and make mistakes please learn from your own mistakes and others. This is a great man who lost his life doing what he loved. The wife and daughter of this wonderful man does not need finger pointing they need prayer and love. So please people HUMBLE yourselves and don't place blame. I lost my brother in 1983 to a wreck on his 1974 superglide. He was buired on Mothers Day. I saw what my mother went thru and this family is going thru a very hard time. Bow your head and pray for this family and the grandmother and grand child that was involved in this terrible accident. Please if you can't say nice things to up-lift this family please keep them to yourself. I thank Click and all of Gastonia HD personal for being so kind to me and my wife on our purchase of a 1992 Ultra and 2003 Ultra classic. Our prayers goes out to all of the family. Click now you can ride in peace on streets of gold with JESUS leading the way! God Bless all of our brothers and sisters who ride!
we will ride on here on earth for you my brother (Click) in christ from your brother in christ.
"Lil Bear" Reese and Alane from SC.

Anonymous said...







Anonymous said...

(法新社倫敦四日電) 英國情色大亨芮孟的成人公司昨天說色情,芮孟a片下載日前部落格去世,享壽八十二歲;成人網站這位身價上億的房地產開情色電影發商,曾經a片在倫敦推出av女優色情一場脫色情衣舞情色表演。