12/23/2013 - Kawasaki ZX-10R.net
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post #1 of 11 Old 01-07-2014, 11:56 PM Thread Starter
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12/23/2013

12/23/13, a beautiful day for a ride. Christmas shopping! Yeah that’s my excuse to hop on the bike. My bike is a clean, green, dialed-in machine that needs to be ridden constantly so it doesn’t feel neglected (we all know bikes don’t have feelings…). And, of course I take my bike Christmas shopping, this way my kids know not to expect a 60” flat screen TV.

I decided to go to Sears Grand in Rancho Cucamonga. A nice drive on Rt. 66 from where I live in Upland – This is Southern California in case you don’t know how to use Google Maps.

Traffic is starting to build up a little since it is about 3:15 pm.
About half way to my destination, traveling east on Foothill Blvd. (Rt. 66) I was driving in between the cages that were waiting for the red light to change at the intersection of Foothill and Archibald Avenue. Out here it is safer to lane split and be in front of the waiting traffic because of all the idiots who think they can text or post something on Facebook and drive a car at the same time. Anyway, I’m waiting for the light to turn green and I see another bike coming up behind me. So I took a step forward to allow this person to come up next to me on my right side, which he did.

I glanced and acknowledged him. He leaned toward me and pointed at my bike and said something like; “nice bike”, and gave me the “ok” sign. I shook my head in thanks, I couldn’t hear him since I had my ear phones on so I assumed that’s what he said. I looked back up at the light and was surprised that it was already green. I put it in gear and started to take off. I think the green light surprised him as well. He did the same, however, he decided to pull a wheelie just into the intersection and ride it. By now we are both just through the intersection and he is slightly in front of me to my right so I have to turn my head slightly to see him. We were not, well at least I wasn’t really getting on it, I was just watching him ride this wheelie. I noticed that he was leaning slightly to the right and starting to drift to the edge of the road.

Just past the intersection there is a Bank of America on the corner and just past the bank about 75 to 100 feet from the intersection there is an entrance to a service road that runs parallel to and about 1 foot lower than the road we were on. This service road is separated by a 2’ wide curbed island. This curbed island is in line with the curbing in front of the bank. He just missed the curb in front of the bank when I cringed thinking oh, Sh*t. One second later still riding a wheelie, his back tire hit the island curb sending him airborne. I think we were going about 45 to 50 mph. I saw the whole thing, but the image that is stuck in my mind is the fraction of a second before his back tire hit the curb. I think he might have just noticed the curb as his tire ripped into it, because I think he tried to brace himself. I don't really know.

He flew over the first parked pickup truck and bounced off the back window of the second parked car, finally planting his head into the trunk of the third parked car. (see diagram below)

I turned into the next entrance to the service road to back to help. He was lying face down, wedged in between the curb and the driver side of the third parked car. There were already two or three people next to him; one was a lady praying for his soul to be saved. He was unconscious but gasping for air. There was nothing we could do but wait for the paramedics to arrive.
He died within minutes upon arrival at the hospital, I don’t think he ever regained consciousness. In fact, the accident took place so fast, that if he didn’t notice the curb he doesn’t know what hit him.

I didn’t know the guy, but I was the last person to communicate with him. From a friendly gesture to lying on the side of the road dying all in a matter of about 25 seconds shows one how quick your life can change.

I keep thinking; if I was not there or if I didn’t move for him to come forward, maybe he wouldn’t be dead.

A hell of a price to pay…
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post #2 of 11 Old 01-12-2014, 10:51 AM
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Thats just crazy when you see shit like that may that person who ever he was rest in peace
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post #3 of 11 Old 01-12-2014, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by earwax View Post

I keep thinking; if I was not there or if I didn’t move for him to come forward, maybe he wouldn’t be dead.

A hell of a price to pay…
You get that thinking out of your head right now. You did absolutely nothing wrong. You did what most riders would do for another rider; I always make a lane next to me if I see another rider, cruiser or sportbike, in my mirror at a light or on the road.

That is not your burden to bare, my friend.

Chances are, like many of us hope for, he died doing what he loved, and he died while unconscious, so he felt no pain. May we all be so lucky.

My prayers go out to you and his family in hopes that peace and understanding will come to you all.

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post #4 of 11 Old 01-12-2014, 12:03 PM
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You get that thinking out of your head right now. You did absolutely nothing wrong. You did what most riders would do for another rider; I always make a lane next to me if I see another rider, cruiser or sportbike, in my mirror at a light or on the road.

That is not your burden to bare, my friend.

Chances are, like many of us hope for, he died doing what he loved, and he died while unconscious, so he felt no pain. May we all be so lucky.

My prayers go out to you and his family in hopes that peace and understanding will come to you all.
Agree! Don't even put any blame on yourself. Feel for the people in that guy's life. So sad. Was he wearing a helmet?
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post #5 of 11 Old 01-18-2014, 01:20 AM Thread Starter
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He was wearing a helmet. It's the law here.

I went to a memorial for him today. I sat in the back and just watched. He was 53 years old and had I think 6 kids. He loved riding...

After the service I did talk to the Pastor who I think is a rider as well. I told him who I was and that I was the last person he acknowledged. He was grateful I came to the service and that what I told him would help answer questions and bring closure to family members. I expressed my condolences for the family and left.

It helped bring closure for me too.

My life from the time of that accident has changed and flashes of images are forever burned into my head... The only thing that I can say has not been affected by all of this? My desire to ride...
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post #6 of 11 Old 01-27-2014, 01:28 AM
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That's some crazy shit man. Witnessing a death like that would shake most people I think. Is what it is though. Gotta shake that shit off and not let it get to you. Do you know what actually killed him? I assume a head injury?

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post #7 of 11 Old 01-28-2014, 02:32 AM Thread Starter
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Not seeing the curb I think was the main reason, but not being a doctor I think the sudden stop on his head is what did it.

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post #8 of 11 Old 01-28-2014, 05:29 AM
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He probably had a huge brain injury/swelling due to the sudden stop with his head

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post #9 of 11 Old 01-29-2014, 08:17 AM
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Fuck. Dude im so sorry you had to witness that and sorry a rider died just simply riding a wheelie and doing what he loved but really, thats how i wanna go. It would shake me pretty bad to be next to him and not be able to do anything. Dont think your supposed to take a helmet off or anything like that so not really sure what id do. Sometimes it just doesnt matter what kinda gear you have on, if its bad enough, your gone. Sad for everyone involved. I watched a guy try to rob a Brinks security truck a few months ago and they shot the fuck out of him right there in the parking lot. Shit like this will mess with ya, just gotta press on ya know? Just be glad you were able to acknowlege him on that last moment. He probably went out having a great day, sounds like it and he wasnt alone, you were there. And yea im sure the family might wanna know your encounter with him. Sometimes simple stuff like that brings peace.
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post #10 of 11 Old 01-29-2014, 09:07 AM
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Wow.

You didn't do anything wrong. Also, going to his memorial service is surely appreciated.

Rest In Peace
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