If you support veterans in La Porte County, or even all over the nation, there’s a good chance you’ve seen a video of Stephen "Headdog" Moore, holding hands with fellow veteran supporters in a huge circle inside the DAV or some other banquet hall, singing “God Bless the USA” at the top of his lungs as the circle sways back and forth in honor of those who have sacrificed for our freedom.
Moore, the owner of Moore’s Auto Repair in Michigan City, has been riding motorcycles most of his life and has turned the hobby into helping veterans and their families, too.
“There is no better satisfaction than helping all of the people I have helped,” Moore said. “People don’t realize there is more than one way to help somebody. I am just glad I get to do my part.”
As president of The Wall Gang, a charitable and social group of motorcycle enthusiasts whose mission is to honor American veterans, Moore is no stranger to the open road.
“Being on the road brings such a freeing feeling, nothing like being in a car,” he said. “When you are riding next to someone, you can learn more about them than you ever thought possible.”
The Wall Gang, which Moore has been a member of for 27 years, provides funds to veteran groups and families in need, and is part of a nation-wide coast to coast motorcycle ride that brings millions of people to the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C., every year. Along the way, the riders stop at veterans homes, hospitals, VA clinics, civic clubs, churches, and anywhere else they can visit with vets and their families to provide comfort, friendship, and peace.
“Our most important goal is to make sure these men and women aren't forgotten,” Moore said. “If you see a veteran make sure you thank them. We want to do whatever we can to make their lives better.”
A signature tradition of The Wall Gang whenever they gather, for whatever reason, is to circle the room, hand in hand, and sing the song mentioned above from beginning to end, in solidarity.
Moore was born and raised in Michigan City and is a veteran himself. His time in the Air Force took him all over the world, including Italy, Spain, and Germany.
“As the old saying goes, there is no place like home,” Moore said. “I love the city and all of my family is here. All those places may be big travel hotspots but they have nothing on Michigan City.”
After his service, Moore turned his knack for fixing things into an auto repair career, and he worked in a few shops before growing his own. Moore’s Auto Repair started in his garage and has grown into a well-known and reliable repair and towing business. It’s the perfect career for him, because he can help people. Moore is that guy – the one friends, family, and any veteran (because no veteran is a stranger) can call for help, be it a tow or a car repair, just about any time of day or night.
Moore rides his motorcycle any chance he gets, even for a local Christmas tradition when he dresses as Santa and cruises around town to spread cheer every winter. But he has a single favorite place to ride, hands down.
“Every day I ride to my mom's house and have breakfast with her,” he said.