DENVER (KDVR) — Navy Veteran Kim Tompkins is a “pay it forward” kind of gal.
After serving in the Navy, Tompkins joined a motorcycle club called United States Veterans Riding Club. There, she found community among fellow combat vets.
Tompkins was especially proud of her custom-made motorcycle, affectionately named “Axle the Dragon Wagon.”
One day as Tompkins geared up to take a ride, she discovered Axle had been stolen.
“I’ll be honest, I cried a little,” said Tompkins.
After receiving support from her fellow riders, friends of Tompkins told her a man named Mark Lockman wanted to speak with her. When Tompkins reached out, she got the surprise of her life. Lockman gave her his motorcycle.
“I put it in to get fixed. I had it back in a week and its been great ever since,” said Tompkins.
Police ended up locating Tompkins’ old bike, Axle. The motorcycle was worse for wear. However, Tompkins no longer needed Axle, and decided to do what Lockman had done. Pay it forward. She got Axle fixed up and gave the bike to another deserving vet.
After this, Tompkins created Project ML Gratitude, a non-profit raising money to give away a new motorcycle to a combat vet each year. The “ML” stands for Mark Lockman.
Those who are interested in paying it forward can visit Project ML Gratitude’s Facebook page, and donate to the cause.