In Memory of Caleb Moore

I remember the first time I “met” Caleb.  An editor from a magazine spied a photo of my ratty new freestyle ramp on facebook and asked if I’d be interested in doing a story on building ramps.  He recommended I get some feedback from Caleb to give the story some credibility.

I reached out to him through facebook and to my complete awe, he responded and gave me his phone number.  I sat in my living room in Dufur Oregon that night and dialed his number, in complete disbelief when he came on the phone.

I had watched Caleb’s career explode through the lens of youtube from my dorm room at college.  I was overcome with envy and respect for this guy that could ride an ATV like no other.  As I moved on from college and out into the real world, my greatest dream became to work with and around Caleb and the Bomb Squad freestyle team.

Fast forward a couple years out of college and I found myself in my pick up truck driving to southern California.  No plan.  No idea what was in store.  Just an invitation from BC Vaught, and Wes Miller to come and see if I could make the cut.

I have no shame.  I have always been and will always be a fan.  When Caleb walked out of the Bomb Squad motor home I could barely contain my excitement.  They were stopped at truck stop getting lunch and I just couldn’t get over the fact that they could walk around so plainly inside without getting mobbed by fans.  Evidently everyone else’s world didn’t revolve around freestyle motocross quite like mine did.

We spent three days at Dumont Dunes filming for the 12th and final installment of the Huevos Grandes video series.  I didn’t do much riding.  Instead I sat back with my camera and watched Wes Miller perform his craft while Caleb and the rest of the guys did theirs.  I was amazed.  I had been dreaming of just being around that environment for so many years and I was finally there.

In the months that followed I found myself in Las Vegas for the kicker big air bash, and then at their home in Texas as they were rolling out to compete in their first Winter X Games.

In July of 2010 while in Texas for a show, I had the amazing privilege of spending a weekend with the entire Moore family…and extended family.  The entire time I couldn’t get over where I was.  Hanging out with the very guys I’d spent so many years looking up to and admiring.  And I’m older than they are lol.

A matter of days later while training at their house, I had a nasty little get off and Caleb was the first one to me.  He took me to the hospital and made sure I was taken care of until my parents could arrive.  He and his family were so incredibly gracious to me and my parents during such a difficult time.

It has been a complete and utter joy to watch their career explode onto the national scene with their involvement in the X Games.  Over the last few years I’ve yelled at the TV, criticized the X Games judges and even stood in my living room pumping my fist and applauding after a stellar performance.

I’ve never been half the rider that he and Colten are and I have nowhere near the memories with him as some, but for almost three years I was blessed to get to follow one of my heroes around with a camera.  The same excitement I felt that first time I ran into him coming out of the motor home in California was how I felt this past August back in Oregon while holding his riding gear so he could sign autographs for a couple of kids.  I shook my head in disbelief that God would allow me the opportunity of spending time around one of my heroes.

Below is a slideshow of some of the photos I took of Caleb, beginning with that trip to Dumont Dunes and ending at the Oregon Dunefest.  The Winter X Games photos are courtesy of Enrico Pavio.
 

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