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Motorcyclists Remember Longtime Figure on Iowa Roadways

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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — Motorcyclists in Eastern Iowa came together this week to say goodbye to a beloved “mother” of their group.

Friends and family gathered Monday to celebrate the life of Margaret Wilson, a business owner and well-known motorcyclist who died last week.

“Margaret always had a smile on her face. She’s just the happiest, nicest lady you’d ever meet,” National Motorcycle Museum president John Parham said.

Her friends said that by the time she passed at 98 years old, Margaret had logged over 500,000 miles on her motorcycle.

And they always found her on a bike until just two years ago.

“And then this 98, 100 pound lady riding her Harley all around the country. She’d get on the bike and take off and really just ride thousands of miles,” Parham said.

“Her hair was always in place,” Susan Gibson, President of the Motor Maids Inc. said. “Never a spot or smudge on that white Oxford shirt she always wore, so she was a true lady of motorcycling.”

In 1951, she joined the oldest women’s motorcycling group in North America, the Motor Maids.

“She was the ambassador of the Motor Maids and was always very excited to share who we are and to encourage other women riders to become a part of us,” Gibson said.

Margaret was married to her husband, Mike, for 71 years. Together they co-owned Wilson’s Motorcycle Sales and opened the first Honda dealership in Cedar Rapids.

Margaret was also an inductee of the National Motorcycle Museum Hall of Fame and the American Motorcycle Association Hall of Fame.

“She never knew a stranger, was always very welcoming and was always very interested in who you were and wanted to hear your story,” Gibson said.

Margaret will be dearly missed by many, but friends and family have confidence her name won’t be forgotten in the motorcycling world.

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