LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - An area motorcycle group is speaking out after one of their members was killed by a suspected drunk driver.
Thursday morning 43 year old Manuel Martinez was charged with intoxication manslaughter after Rickey Parks was killed while riding his motorcycle Wednesday night.
39-year-old Rickey Parks was an active member of the Messengers, Clean and Sober, a motorcycle riding club here in Lubbock. His friends and fellow riders want their message to be heard now, more than ever.
Rickey Parks never knew Wednesday night's ride would be his last, but around 11:00 p.m., he was near 4th Street and Milwaukee Avenue when police say a pickup truck ran a red light and hit him.
Shoan Schuknecht heard about the accident and rushed to the scene. "They said it was Rick, I couldn't tell just by looking at his bike, it was all burnt," says Schuknecht.
The motorcycle caught fire and Parks was taken to UMC, where he later died.
"We don't know why, we don't understand it, but he was the type of man that all of us wanted to be," said Schuknecht.
The Messengers are a group of motorcycle riders, who spread a clean and sober message. Parks was a part of that group that just got back from a weekend trip.
"I immediately thought that we had just returned from this wonderful time in Ruidoso," said Terrence Harp.
His friends tell KCBD NewsChannel 11, that Rickey has been sober for three years now, and was someone who really turned his life around.
"Rickey changed his life, and anybody out there can change your life too, if you want to," said Harp.
And as a suspected drunk driver takes one life, these men hope to save another.
"I think it's our job to still get out there and carry the message, to still carry that this is a real life and death deal," said Schuknecht.
All the while remembering the good things about the man who was behind that message.
"We lost a heck of a person, I mean he's a good, good guy and he will be loved and missed always," said Greg Flick.
Parks leaves behind a wife, and five children. A fund has been set up to help the Park family with funeral arrangements. If you would like to donate, you can donate to the Rickey Parks Memorial Fund at any Wells Fargo location.
At this time, funeral arrangements are pending.
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