DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - There's a new motorcycle club in town. And these bikers don't just wear cuts, they also wear firefighting gear.
The QC Axemen are "professional firefighters that like to ride motorcycles and like to do charity work, and we're taking the brotherhood beyond the fire station and the fire department," says Chris "Fuzz" Elliott, a Lt. at Moline Fire and Vice President of QC Axeman.
The QC Axeman formed their motorcycle club in October.
"We are the first one in Iowa and we're kind of unique and that's why we went with Quad Cities together because we didn't put a space between Quad Cities because it's Iowa and Illinois," says Fuzz.
Brian "Chopper" Hansen is a Retired Rock Island Arsenal Firefighter and President of QC Axemen. He says members don't have to be from Bettendorf, Davenport, East Moline, Moline or Rock Island to join.
"They can be from the Quad Cities' area but you have to be a union member or in good stranding or retired and 20% of the membership can be people that have the same philosophy, do good, good hard working people love to do charity events," says Chopper.
The Axemen originated in Detroit and there are over 30 chapters across the nation, but this chapter is the first in the area.
"It's been a dream of mine I've been pursuing this for six years," Chopper said. "I was getting closer to retirement and I got nervous because how am I going to keep the brotherhood, and thought hey this is the thing to do. For me, it's just a great thing about being around my brothers that I've spent the last 24 years around. We love to ride motorcycles and we love to help people. And it's the love that brings us together and we love each other."
As part of their efforts to give back to the community, the Axemen are selling raffle tickets at bike day to help raise funds for the
St Florian Burn Camp.
"It's for like kids that have been severely burned or mobility and no one is staring at them and they can just have fun because they're great beautiful human beings," says Chopper.
And these firefighters say giving back is in their blood.
"I think that's how we're built that's how we're wired," says Fuzz.
Chopper who's dream helped to bring the QC Axeman to fruition has been a firefighter, a soldier and now president of a motorcycle club. He says they're all about family.
"It's just true love, they're my family," Chopper said. "When you choose to be a firefighter or in the military or the beliefs that we have in the club, it's all about helping people, it's about sacrifice and it's about love for your brother."
These firefighters say helping others is part of who they are, in and out of uniform.
The QC Axemen will be hosting a bag tournament at Caddy's on June 15th to raise funds for St Florian Burn Camp. On June 29th is their biggest event. They will have a "Big Ride" for the Ronald McDonald House.