Most people know the importance of having a good life insurance policy. But, when it is finally needed and all of a sudden, one discovers that it is not there, it can be truly devastating to families.
Recently, this happened to one of Craig’s most beloved citizens, Ray Price who passed in January.
According to his grandson Zac Price, the insurance company that his granddad had paid on for years was a scam, which ultimately left his grandmother Deloris struggling to pay the bills, “on top of trying to cope with the loss of her husband whom she had been married to for 70 years.”
“Two years ago, the insurance company reported my granddad as having passed away when he was perfectly alive and well,” Price said. “His life insurance company dropped him due to this, and all the money he had paid into was a total loss.”
By this time, the family discovered that the policy was an insurance scam. “The underwriters were making themselves as beneficiaries and taking the money,” Price added.
This unfortunate circumstance led Price to reach out to help his grandma. “My grandparents mean everything to me because they raised me the last half of my life,” Price said before adding, “I owe them the world.”
Zac planned a Ray Price Benefit Ride for June 23. “I thought of the idea because I am a part of ABATE (A Brotherhood Against Totalitarian Enactments) Mountain Thunder Chapter,” he said. “We do benefits for people all the time.”
A Brotherhood Against Totalitarian Enactments is an organization not meant to be confused with a motorcycle club “MC” that fights for laws for motorcycle riders. “Mountain Thunder is a chapter that started in the Bent Mountain area,” Price said.
Price added that his grandfather was like a dad to him and if it weren’t for him helping out with auto loans and teaching invaluable life lessons, “who knows where I would be. Price quickly added, “I was for sure the cause of some of his gray hairs, but my grandparents worked hard to teach me what was right.”
Zac also said that his granddad, Ray Price, “Rose above good stature and everyone he met looked up to him like he was ten feet tall.”
It didn’t matter what time he had to wake up for work, even if it were 4 a.m., Zac’s grandmother would already have breakfast made for Ray. “She made sure that he never left hungry,” Zac said. “That’s just the type of people we are, – kind-hearted, loving and extremely caring.”
Price shared his event on Facebook, and throughout Roanoke and Craig.
One post read: “Bring your bike, hot rod, jacked up truck, mini-van, and for my Craig County friends…your derby car! Slap farm use on it and throw a bale of hay in it and come. It’s gonna be a blast! Help my Grandma keep her house!”
The initial goal was to raise enough funds to buy Ray a headstone. “It turned into trying to raise around 8k or at least a big chunk of that amount to pay off my Grandma’s house so she can stay there like she wants to,” Price said.
Over 85 people’s hearts spoke as loudly as the bikes were. It was $10/bike and $5/rider to enter.
The ride was from the Roanoke Moose Lodge to Zac’s grandmother’s home in New Castle. From there, they took 311 towards Catawba and turned towards Roanoke Cement into Daleville, where it all ended at Schooners.
When bikes started arriving, Zac’s grandmother asked her daughter-in-law Becky where all of the bikes were going. When she found out “they’re all coming here” she was in total shock. About 65 people arrived and shared their love for her.
Family members provided lunch for everyone, which included; pulled pork BBQ, hot dogs, beans, banana pudding and brownies. “We also had Carol Brizendine’s famous hot dog chili that my Aunt Wanda made,” Price said.
When everyone left they headed to Schooners where a 50/50 drawing, door prizes and live music, provided by the band Ol #7, took place.
A grandfather clock was donated by Priscilla, the wife of member Alfred Matherly. Her dad handmade it, and it was auctioned to raise an additional $200.
“Much thanks to the many people who donated. They include Imagine Ink Tattoo, Star City Powersports, Frontline, Eurosports, Kroger, Jacks, Jersey Lilly’s, Bryansteens, Kanawha Valley Arena, Roanoke Moose lodge, Schooners and Priscilla’s dad,” Price said. “I also want to thank Roanoke Valley Harley Davidson for all the work they did to get my bike back the day before the ride.”
The 50/50 was $400 which David Lester won but donated his winnings back to Ms. Price.
“I want to thank everyone from the bottom of my heart who showed up and supported the Ray Price Benefit Ride,” Price posted on his Facebook page. “I will cherish the moments from today for the rest of my life. Seeing the tears of joy running down my grandmother’s face and the members of the ride when we presented her a total of roughly $3500 was one of the greatest moments of my life.”
Other locals posted similar comments on their Facebook page;
Becky Price: “Thank you to everyone who came and those who participated and shared your day and love with the family, especially Granny Price.”
Edward Conner: “Zac Price, you did one heck of a job putting this together. Your grandmother and whole family welcomed everyone into the Price home and made everyone feel at home. The meal provided was awesome! Praise the Lord for a safe and wonderful day. My hats off to you brother, you have earned my respect and confidence.”
Price currently lives in Roanoke. From his heritage, he also has the gift of singing. He recently recorded an album with platinum band Lady Antebellum. “We named it after a song I wrote for my granddad called, ‘Ten Feet Tall,’” Price said. “You can stream it anywhere as well as download it.”
Zac travels back and forth to Nashville, Tennessee, quite often. “I’m chasing my dream as a musician and probably will end up moving there one day,” he said.
Still, he will always come back home, as that is where his heart and grandmother resides.