Country Club Friends Inc. held one of its first rallies in 2011 at River Bend RV Resort in Harrisburg, Ore.

Country Club Friends Inc. held one of its first rallies in 2011 at River Bend RV Resort in Harrisburg, Ore.

Although Country Coach Inc. stopped building high-end diesel pusher motorhomes in 2009, the brand lives on thanks to 11 chapters of the Family Motor Coach Association (FMCA).

Included is Country Coach Friends Inc. (CCFI), a 300-plus-member nonprofit that was created shortly after the Junction City-Ore.-based company — founded by RV-industry entrepreneur Bob Lee — went out of business.

“There’s not much out there you can compare to Country Coach’s driveability unless you go to a Prevost (bus),” said CCFI President John Malabicky of Yorbalinda, Calif., who drives a 45-foot Country Coach Magna. “It’s a beautifully riding machine. And the quality inside and the craftsmanship, there’s still nothing out there that can stand up to Country Coach.”

Malabicky said aficionados still are mystified why Country Coach closed down.

“Nobody knows how a company that was so well loved could go out of business,” he said.

CCFI was formed in 2011 by a core group of Country Coach owners, although owners of other motorhomes are invited to join and can hold office in the organization.

CCFI hosts two or three rallies a year that focus on raising money for such charities as Texas Veterans, which provides service dogs to veterans, Wounded Worriers and God’s Storehouse, a food pantry in Harrisburg, Ore.

“The whole point about RVing is getting together with friends,” Malabicky said. “And we all like to help people. We raise quite a bit of money. Every rally we have, we have a designated charity.”

The most recent rally in mid-May drew about 50 coaches to Buckhorn RV Resort in Kerrville, Texas. Between Aug. 16-22, CCFI will meet at the Deschutes County Fairgrounds in Redmond, Ore.

“We like to bring the people back to Oregon,”  Malabicky said, noting that several service centers were opened by former employees after Country Coach shut down.

“They are a high-tech coach that you don’t want to take to a regular service center and have them work on it. You want to take your coach to someone who helped build it,” he told RVBusiness.