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’76 Harley Davidson

Posted February 06, 2013 in Community Featured, Clear Lake
Roger Eliason puts a shine on his 1976 Harley Davidson.

Roger Eliason puts a shine on his 1976 Harley Davidson.

There was more than a Baby Boom underway when Harry Eliasen returned home to Clear Lake after World War II.

Millions of returning veterans needed homes for their growing families, and Harry set out to answer that need. A bricklayer by trade, Harry had learned the craft from his father — also a bricklayer — and bought five lots in order to build spec homes.

Harry and his wife raised their family in one of four little, brick homes built in a row on the first four lots. Today, son Roger and his wife Dolores call it home. Indeed, if you’re looking at an older brick home in Clear Lake, there’s a good chance Harry Eliason Masonry had a hand in it.

“The Fifth Lot” that Harry purchased after the war was never developed as a spec home. Instead, it ended up as a shop. Today, the family still refers to it as “The Fifth Lot,” and the shop that Harry built still stands. Having been built by a Navy veteran of Iwa Jima and Okinawa, it only seems fitting that it’s home to Roger’s American-made pride and joy: a 1976 Harley Davidson Liberty Edition SuperGlide.

Roger bought the Harley in 1978 and rode it a lot back then, but the demands of fatherhood eventually meant that the Harley was relegated to the back of the shop.

“My kids got in to playing sports in junior high and all through high school, and so ‘Coach Dad’ had to take a hiatus from motorcycling,” Roger explains.

But about four years ago, he decided it was time to dig the motorcycle out from under the moth balls and get it humming again.

“It’s a legend,” Roger says of the American-made Harley.

Roger appreciates the tradition of Harley Davidson, which was founded in 1903.

“They’ve got a lot of history, and they’ve got the sound,” he says of the popular machines.

Now that the bike is fully restored, Roger’s earned awards at vintage motorcycle shows, but mostly just enjoys taking the bike out for a cruise.

“It’s a driver,” Roger says. “It’s not a sit-there-and-look-pretty,’ ” kind of cycle.

Roger has owned several motorcycles over the years, all of them Harley Davidsons. And this is one Harley with its own very special home, built by a veteran just returned from the war.

Contact Darren at 953-4822 ext. 304 or to recommend someone for an upcoming issue of “What’s In Your Garage?”

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