I was one of those that hated helmets and helmet laws for 20 years. Took a year off to ride coast to coast, border to border. Had been out 7 months and after having a close call with a blowout (shop had left a small chisel inside the tire/rim when installing new back tire)... and then the next day, going down the Interstate west of Allentown, Pa.....I was locked in the left lane with no place to go and hit a recap off a semi coming down the road straight at me. It was going end over end and when I got right to it, it opened up like a "U" and I drove right through. Two close ones in two days, pulled off the next ramp and decided to take a secondary road, and cool it for a day or two. Got out my map, took a look...and saw a bridge off the exit road it was on..went over the river and then up into the Pocono Mts. Got on, fired up...put it in gear...then for some reason...shut it down and got my helmet off the sissy bar. 18 miles down the road a deer jumped out of the brush and I hit him in mid-air, launched me like a rocker and hit head first at an angle and started sliding downt the road. PAHP said I slid about 135 feet face down on the pavement. Hospital 13 days with bad 2nd degree burns, totalled bike....I all happened so fast it was unreal...remember blinking and the deer was there..in my windshield. Next thing...sliding down the road, face down, looking up at those trees on the right thinking.."I got this damn helmet on...I'm gonna live." Laying in the hospital, I promised The Man I'd never get up again without a helmet. Rode without one for 20 years and never put a bike down. This all happened in 1987...I'm still riding...but never without a helmet. I ain't preaching....because who was I to talk. But I'm here because of that one simple act. Everytime I hear about one of our brothers or sisters leaving us because of a wreck...the first thing I want to know is.... were they wearing a helmet? I still don't like wearing it...never did...never will....but I do it. Just think about it....that's all. And you can bet on it...when I see people riding down the road...no helmet and the wind thing...I'm envious....feel like a kid that can't come out to play, but I made a promise. So if you don't wear one....may you never, never come close.