Motorcycle designer Compton takes inspiration from sneakers

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HARBOR CITY, LOS ANGELES (KABC) – Andrew Thompson, also known as Harley-Drew, has decided to merge his love of Harley Davidsons with his love of shoes. Now he’s not just wearing his favorite pair of Jordans, he’s riding them.

“My passion for building bicycles came from my grandfather. [He] was building bikes in the early 1950s and did so until his death in 2012, ”Thompson said.

Thompson said he built his first Harley in high school and said that passion had led him in the right direction.

“It kept me out of trouble, which allowed me to discover my passion for building and designing bikes,” said Thompson.

Thompson also cares deeply about his community of Compton and the youth. When he’s not building bikes, he organizes community cleanups.

He said he knows that many young people love tennis shoes and hopes his work will generate some interest among the younger generation.

“It’s important because a lot of young people become gang members,” said Ms. Showtime, a local motorcyclist and longtime friend of Thompson. “A lot of young people laid down their guns and bought a motorcycle. They’ve seen motorcycles, but they’ve never seen Nike like a motorcycle.”

“A nice white Jordan motorcycle, I mean with the stats on the floor, it was just beautiful,” said Nick “Big Slick” Naish, general manager of sales for California Harley Davidson. “I was blown away. I have never seen anything like it and we are around custom motorcycles every day and I have never seen anything like it.”

Thompson said his grandfather John McCollum, also known as PeeWee, was recognized as one of Harley Davidson’s Iron Elite, who recognizes the contributions of the black motorcycle community. Thompson said he hopes one of his own custom bikes can one day earn him the same recognition.

“I want to do something that’s going to be like Harley, ‘A man like that is cool,’” said Thompson. “Maybe one day Harley will let me design their anniversary bike.”

Thompson said his two Nike and Jordan bikes are not for sale, but he takes requests for custom bikes and can be contacted on his Instagram.

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