Cyclist Killed in Hit-and-Run Overnight in OKC

BicycleCrashFeb658-year-old Joseph Edward Helmka was struck by a vehicle around 3:00 AM last night near the corner of NW 10th and MacArthur.  He was spotted by a passing motorist and was rushed to the hospital but he expired before arriving at the hospital.  Police are asking anyone with information regarding this crash to contact them at 405-235-7300.

News Sources:

NewsOK: http://okbik.es/15c

KOCO: http://okbik.es/15d

News 9: http://okbik.es/15e

KFOR: http://okbik.es/15f


Spencer Family Continues Search for Hit-and-Run Driver

It’s been two years since the Oklahoma cycling community was shocked by two bicycle fatalities in less than 48 hours both involving long time cyclists.  One of those incidents involved the hit-and-run killing of Alan Spencer.  The driver in that crash has never been identified and police now consider the case a cold one.  As the anniversary of the crash approaches, the Spencer family repeats their plea for information in the case and for the driver of the car to come forward:

News9.com – Oklahoma City, OK – News, Weather, Video and Sports |

The family believes that a black or dark truck or SUV with a black guard may have hit and killed Alan Spencer.  If you have any information involving this incident, you should call CrimeStoppers at (405)-235-7300.  You can remain anonymous.


Cyclist Hurt in Yesterday's Hefner Crash Succumbs to Injuries – UPDATED

One of the three cyclists injured in yesterday’s bicycle collision at Lake Hefner has died as a result of his injuries.  The rider, Bernard Monty Maughan, 68, was travelling westbound when he collided with two cyclists (of a group of four) travelling east.  From NewsOK:

Updated 5/2/2012 5:12 PM:

Many have asked me both in comments and emails about the cause of the accident to which I have had no information.  However, this was just posted to News9.com:

Police say 68-year-old Bernard Monty Maughan veered into oncoming cyclists on the dam. Maughan was an avid cyclist and ranked as one of the best in his age group in the state.

His friends tell News 9 he suffered a medical emergency moments before the crash which caused him to lose control of his bicycle.

“He died doing what he loved to do and that was riding and racing bicycles,” says Peter Erdoes, who was in Maughan’s cycling club.

“He was always willing to lend a hand to lesser experienced riders,” adds Erdoes.

via Beloved Cyclist Dies After Crashing Into Other Cyclists In OKC – News9.com – Oklahoma City, OK – News, Weather, Video and Sports |.

It is a sad thing to lose such a prominent member of the cycling community and our thoughts are with his friends and family.


Three Injured in Lake Hefner Bike Collision

Updated 5/2/2012: It has now been reported that one cyclist has died from his injuries.  Details here.

The Oklahoman is reporting that three cyclists were injured tonight at around 7:00 PM on Lake Hefner dam:

About 7 p.m., four bicyclists were traveling east at the Lake Hefner Dam when a 70-year-old man bicycling west collided with two of them, Emergency Medical Services Authority spokeswoman Lara O’Leary said.

via Three bicyclists hurt at Lake Hefner | NewsOK.com

The 70 year old man was taken to the hospital in critical condition while the other two cyclists suffered more minor injuries but were also taken to the hospital.

KOCO states that the accident happened on the north side of the lake on the dam, but I am having a hard time picturing how such a head on collision could happen in that spot.  I do know that most of my close calls happen on the trails so please be careful out there.


Metro Cyclists Participate in Awareness Ride

I had really hoped to make it to last night’s Piedmont Cyclist Awareness Ride but the constraints of work just didn’t make it possible.  Thankfully, dozens of other cyclists showed up to raise awareness of cyclists on our roads and to pay tribute to Gary Caldwell and Eric Johnson who were injured on this same road last week.  The Piedmont-Surrey Gazette, which has followed the story closely, put together this video piece on the event:


Piedmont Crash Update

Pastor Gary Caldwell

Staff Photo of Pastor Gary Caldwell

I’ve received numerous questions and have a small amount of new information regarding the crash on Monday that involved Pastor Gary Caldwell of the First Baptist Church of Piedmont and church staff member, Eric Johnson.

Pastor Still in Serious Condition

From comments, emails and news stories, it seems that Mr. Caldwell suffered several broken bones and lacerations including a broken vertebrae, ankle and pelvis and loss of his right ear. Additionally, he experienced a torn/ruptured artery and some bleeding on the brain that has lead to several “minor strokes” which in turn have lead to short and long term memory loss.  From official reports, he is still listed as being in serious condition.

However, according to the Piedmont-Surrey Gazette, who have covered this story closely, he has shown some marked improvement:

“We consider the last 24 hours to be miraculous,” McCown [Associate Pastor] said. “From being a very grave situation and thinking he might not survive the accident, to hours later him being able to open his eyes and communicate with the family. That’s a miracle.”

Several first responders said Caldwell’s condition was grim and one rescue worker said he was not sure he would make it on the ride to the hospital. However, Caldwell’s condition was upgraded from critical to serious, and while doctors are still closely monitoring his health, Caldwell’s progression in the first 24 hours was a reason to rejoice for the congregation of Piedmont’s largest church.

via PiedmontToday.com » Congregation rallies around pastor as he recovers.

Additionally, according to the church’s update page (which is being updated very regularly)  it appears that his broken bones will not require surgery:

Dad had an uneventful night. Mom and I have talked to him this morning, and he is still forgetting what happened pretty quickly after we tell him. The ortho doctor does not think Dad will need surgery for his broken neck, ankle, or back. We are so thankful for this news, especially considering that he was literally hit by a truck. Love you guys! Please keep praying!

via Prayers For Our Pastor.

Mr. Johnson’s injuries seem to have been much less severe in comparison.  He was treated for a bad case of road rash including the removal of some embedded gravel and was released from the hospital on Monday.

Police Investigation Continues

Several people have written expressing dismay that the driver was not ticked at the scene.  From what I have been able to ascertain, this is quite common in cases involving serious injury.  If a citation was issued and the fine paid by the driver and then later greater negligence was discovered, it is possible that the driver could not be charged due to double jeopardy.  However, the police are continuing to investigate the accident and the results will be turned over to the district attorney who will decide what charges may be filed:

Police are attempting to recreate the accident based on eyewitness accounts, photographs from the scene and evidence, which included pieces of a bike helmet that were found as far as 50 feet away from the point of impact.

According to a Piedmont officer, no charges have been filed at this time and the results of the investigation will be turned over to the district attorney’s office.

via PiedmontToday.com » Investigation continues as pastor remains in ‘serious’ condition.

Cyclist Organizes Awareness Ride

Ric Corman, a Piedmont cyclist, has organized an awareness ride for Monday, March 12th from 5:30 to 8:30 PM.  A large number of area bicycle clubs and shops will be participating in the ride and riders of all stripes are encouraged to join in to bring awareness of cyclists on metro roads.  Full details on the ride can be found at the event’s Facebook page.

Additional Story Links

Since this story first broke, numerous media outlets have published additional information on the case:

 


Church Pastor and Staff Member Injured in Crash

Gary Caldwell, senior pastor for the First Baptist Church of Piedmont and church staff member, Eric Johnson, were struck from behind by a Ford F-150 pickup while cycling near 150th Street and Piedmont Road today around 12:45 PM.  As of this afternoon, Mr. Caldwell is listed as being in serious condition and Mr. Johnson was listed as being in good condition.

Police are investigating the case but the driver was not ticked at the scene.  Police say they will turn over their investigation results to the District Attorney for review.

Below is a video report for Piedmont Today:

Additional information can be found in the following stories:

http://www.piedmonttoday.com/city/two-cyclists-hit-on-piedmont-road/

http://www.koco.com/news/30612081/detail.html


Authorities Seek Driver in Hit-and-Run Crash with Cyclist

State Troopers are seeking the driver of a vehicle who struck a cyclist just west of Cement, OK last night:

The crash occurred at about 7:15 p.m. on U.S. 277, just west of Cement.

Troopers said Josh Steven Henderson, 17, of Chickasha, was riding his bike west on the two-lane road when the vehicle, also traveling west, hit him and caused him to veer to the right. The vehicle fled the scene, troopers said.

Henderson was airlifted to Oklahoma University Medical Center with leg and head injuries. He was listed in good condition late Monday

via Troopers Seek Driver In Bicyclist Hit-And-Run – Oklahoma City News Story – KOCO Oklahoma City.

You can reach Division G of the Highway Patrol at 580-353-0783 if you have any information.

Troopers have currently listed the lack of proper lighting on the bicycle as the cause of the crash.

 


OKC Police Seek Driver in Hit-and-Run Involving Cyclist

News 9 is reporting that police are seeking the driver of a car who struck a cyclist on Monday morning near 31st and Military. The driver initially stopped and asked the cyclist, Bill Hartman, if he was hurt, but then when Mr. Hartman said, “Yes, I am hurt”, the driver said he was sorry but then fled the scene. The driver was middle-aged, wore glasses and had light brown hair. The vehicle is described as a small, gold colored beat-up car.  Mr. Hartman thinks it is likely that the driver lives near the accident site (NW 31st and Military).  Employees of The Red Cup coffee house helped Mr. Hartman until medical help could arrive.   Mr. Hartman was left with a badly broken leg.  If you have any information, please contact the Oklahoma City Police at 405-231-2121.

Mr. Hartman doesn’t have insurance so his co-workers have setup a collection fund at Coppermark Bank to help defray the medical costs.  You can leave donations at any local Coppermark Bank location.

Click on the image below to see the full story:

 


Tulsa Cyclist Dies in Hit-and-Run Crash

The Tulsa World is reporting that a cyclist that was hit on Saturday in a hit-and-run crash has died:

A bicyclist seriously injured in a hit-and-run collision Saturday has died.

Mowery Funeral Home identified the victim as Bobby Richardson, 51, of Owasso.

A motorist found Richardson in the roadway on 101st East Avenue near 12th Street at about 8:30 p.m., officers at the scene said.

via Bicyclist injured in hit-and-run Saturday dies | Tulsa World.

The cyclist was found by a passing motorist but was unable to describe the car that hit the cyclist.  A silver sedan was seen in the area around the time of the crash, but police are not sure the vehicle was involved in the crash.

Anyone with any information is being asked to contact Tulsa Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS (2677) or to leave a tip online at http://tulsaworld.com/crimestoppers .