Ray Moon, warrior, on Episode 207


A warrior in all respects, Ray Moon fought in Vietnam and continued fighting for our rights when he returned. Land warriors were as important in the beginning as they are now. Ray was inducted in the Off Road Motorsports Hall of Fame in 1979. Ray is why we say; legends live at ORMHOF.org. Be sure to tune in on your favorite podcast app.


3:12 – I had my first encounter with a Jeep in Vietnam and I didn’t know how to drive the damn thing

7:41 – it worked out very well, the military structure, I got it, I grew up.

16:29 – I live in Simi Valley now and volunteer at the Reagan Library, the Presidential Library

29:11 – PTSD is what they call it today, and we all have problems with that, I was no different

35:43 – I became the conservation chairman for Cal Four Wheel Drive

41:23 – There was a woman who was so happy we were closed down so she could take her Buick out and enjoy the posies, and the BLM guy was like, no, if we restrict them, we restrict you

47:16 – we wanted to take a reasonable attitude toward all that

53:51 – you don’t go into any of this stuff for the glory

Special thanks to ORMHOF.org for support and sponsorship of this podcast.


[00:01:15.670] – Big Rich Klein
On today’s episode of Conversations with Big Rich, my guest is the 1979 Ormhoff Inductee, Ray Moon.

[00:01:23.220] – Big Rich Klein
Ray started his career in off-road while in Vietnam, serving his time in the army. Ray fought for public lands as the conservation chairman and then President of Cal Fourwheel Drive. Ray, it is so good to have you on this podcast. I’m looking forward to finding out about your history and everything that you’ve done in the off-road industry. And Thank you for being a guest.

[00:01:48.160] – Ray Moon
Well, Rich, it’s an honor to be with you. I thank you. I didn’t see this one coming, but glad to be here. Thank you very much. Yeah.

[00:01:59.670] – Big Rich Klein
So let’s get started at the very beginning. Where were you born and raised?

[00:02:06.420] – Ray Moon
Well, they told me I was born in New York City, Manhattan. Raised, my dad was in the movie business. He was an executive with Universal Pictures, so we spent some time in Chicago when I was really young, and then came back to New York, and I grew up in Connecticut, left Connecticut when I was Well, 15. I moved down to Kentucky. My dad died. I lost my dad when I was 10, and sadly, I moved down to Kentucky. When we got remarried, and that didn’t work out. So we came out here to California when I was about 16, I guess, about a year later. Then I’ve been out here ever since, moved to Riverside. Ramona High School at Riverside, and Kicked around for a year or two and did a little traveling around the country, drove around and went in the army, ’65.

[00:03:10.780] – Big Rich Klein
What was ’65 that you went in? Okay.

[00:03:12.980] – Ray Moon
Yeah, I went in the army in ’65. And that was in the middle of Vietnam and all that. I ended up going to Vietnam. Actually, I went to officer candidate’s school. The army, in their infinite wisdom, decided I should become an officer, so I did. I went to Officer Candidate’s School six months. In any event, I ended up going to Vietnam in November ’67. And it was over there that I actually encountered my first Jeep. You know that I had a Jeep as a lieutenant. I didn’t know how to drive the damn thing. It was all the mud and everything else like that. And I just I had never given one of those. I was up in a very muddy place called Camp Eagle and got it stuck because I couldn’t find out how to operate the four-wheel drive. READ MORE

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