Requiescant in pace – April 2010

In a earlier blog entry I wrote that I subscribed to Google news with certain key words, like “Harley-Davidson” and “Road King”, and I was quite shocked to get on a daily basis email notifications of a fellow Harley driver who died in a accident. These feeds were mainly limited to events in the US, and included personal details like name and age. Such detailed publication may not be possible in all countries due to privacy protection laws.

Following my own accident, in which nobody was seriously injured, I decided to compile these news  snippets for April 2010, and researched some more information. Sadly the news of one fatal accident per day is not much, in 2008 a total of 5.357 persons died in motorcycles accidents, these are 14 drivers a day who loose their lives. More worrying however, this number doubled from the year 2000 (2.897), while the number of registered motorcycles and total mileage also increased, but by a smaller percentage.

But lets keep these high numbers in some perspective and not condemn motorcycle driving as a crazy suicidal activity: yes, in 2005, a total of 4.253 motorcycle drivers and passengers dies, but in the same year, nearly 8 times as many persons (32.637) committed suicide. (US data)

I hope this list of fatal accidents in April 2010 is complete, but I fear it may not be. If you know of other tragedies involving drivers of a Harley Davidson motorcycle, please feel free to add them in their memories in the comment fields.

Please drive safely, and wear a helmet !


2.4. Jim Charles Dickens, 35, and Joshua Otwell, 32, died Saturday morning and evening respectively at University Medical Center after the crash on the southbound access road of Interstate 27 near 29th Street, both men were driving Harley Davidson motorcycles south about 11:30 p.m. Friday.

4.4. An early morning crash claimed the life of a Chattanooga man. Police say 25 year old Samantha Lowe was in the roundabout on North Access heading towards Highway 153 when a Harley Davidson driven by 24 year old Zachery Nichols crossed the double yellow lines to pass on the left

4.4. A 34 -year-old woman was killed when her motorcycle rammed a parked, unoccupied pickup truck on Wanaao Road near Paopua Loop around 7:55 p.m. Saturday. Police said the woman was heading north on Wanaao on a black Harley-Davidson motorcycle when she ran into the parked Toyota truck

5.4. A 60-year-old Harley Davidson rider from Ponce De Leon died Sunday evening in a single vehicle wreck on County Road 181.

5.4. Two St. Marys residents were killed in a two-vehicle crash at 3:38 p.m. Saturday. Police said a 1994 Harley Davidson motorcycle driven by Joseph M. Michuck II, 50, St. Marys, was traveling south on the Glen Hazel Road and failed to negotiate a curve. The motorcycle crossed the center line, into the northbound lane in front of a 2003 Ford Ranger driven by Michael Pearsall, 51, St. Marys. The motorcycle hit the right front of the pickup. Michuck and his passenger, Irene Sorg, 50, St. Marys were thrown from the motorcycle.

6.5. A 57-year-old Canvas man was killed Saturday evening when he lost control of his motorcycle. According to a release from the Nicholas County Sheriff’s Department, Terry Lee Vilacha was traveling east on Ward Road about 3:30 p.m., when he lost control of his 1993 Harley-Davidson, crossed the center line and struck a westbound pickup truck.

6.4. Mercure, 53, was riding his Harley-Davidson Road King motorcycle on Howard Street when he collided with a Mazda Protégé and was thrown from the bike. Mercure was pronounced dead at Lawrence & Memorial Hospital.

6.4. A Martinsville motorcyclist was killed this morning when a car pulled out of a parking lot into the motorcycle’s path, a spokesman for the Virginia State Police said. Drew M. Thomson, 58, was riding a 2009 Harley Davidson Fat Boy southbound on business route U.S. 220 in Martinsville when the wreck happened about 10 a.m

8.4. At 8:43 p.m., a Harley Davidson motorcycle operated by Kenneth Riggs, 51, of Coventry Township, was traveling at a high rate of speed eastbound on W. Comet Road. Riggs failed to stop for the stop sign at South Main Street and proceeded into the intersection. Riggs struck the driver’s side of a Pontiac driven by Kyle Hoaglin,  26, of Coventry Township.  Riggs was pinned under the vehicle and died at the scene.

9.4.  A Wake County attorney died from injuries he received in a motorcycle accident as he was headed home Thursday evening. Anthony Brannon, 45, of Holly Springs, was driving his Harley Davidson motorcycle at 7:21 p.m. on Reedy Creek Road on the outskirts of Raleigh when he lost control, crossed the center line and spun off the left side of the road.

10.4. Scottsdale police have identified a Marana woman killed Friday night in a motorcycle crash. Sandra Stough, 52, died late Friday night when her Harley Davidson motorcycle collided with a truck in Scottsdale, police said. Police said a white Dodge was turning left off Scottsdale Road when a Harley Davidson traveling southbound collided with the front of the truck. The rider was not wearing a helmet and was transported to Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Medical Center. She died just before midnight.

10.4. A 66-year-old motorcyclist was killed Saturday afternoon when he lost control of his Harley and slammed into a guardrail on Highway 9. Washington State Patrol troopers responded to the scene, about 11 miles southeast of Mount Vernon, at about 1:40 p.m. An investigation determined that the motorcyclist, an Arlington resident, was heading south on his 2007 Harley Davidson FXDC when the wheels left the roadway. The motorcycle slammed into the guardrail and the man was ejected. The motorcyclist, who was wearing a helment, was pronounced dead at the scene.

10.4. A Girard woman died Saturday when the motorcycle she was riding collided with a farm tractor on Ill. 111 in Macoupin County. Rosaleta Tipton, 58, was riding a 2003 Harley-Davidson motorcycle about a mile north of Bus Lane about 2:30 p.m. when she crossed the centerline and hit the rear tires of a farm tractor pulling a field cultivator, according to a report from Illinois State Police. Tipton, who was not wearing a helmet, was thrown from the motorcycle.

11.4. A 52-year-old Sanford man was killed when his motorcycle hit a deer in Volusia County, the Florida Highway Patrol said. Robert Gam was traveling north on County Road 415, north of Taylor Road, when the deer ran into his path about noon Saturday. Gam hit the brake and swerved, but he hit the right side of the animal, a trooper said. Gam, who was not wearing a helmet, fell from the Harley-Davidson and died.

11.4. A Staunton man is dead following a two-vehicle crash in Augusta County Saturday evening. The crash occurred at 5:50 p.m. on Route 608 just north of Route 340. A 1988 Dodge Ram 50 pick-up truck was traveling north on Route 608 when it crossed over into the southbound lane and struck a 1984 Harley Davidson Roadster head-on.

12.4.  For the second time in less than a week, a Triangle motorcyclist was killed in an accident Sunday afternoon. Lawrence Joseph Barrett of Youngsville was killed when he collided with an SUV in Wake Forest at about 4:50 p.m., according to Wake Forest police. Barrett, 50, was riding a Harley-Davidson westbound on Elm Avenue, near the intersection with South White Street, when he hit a Ford Freestyle that was traveling northbound on South White Street, according to police.

12.4. Details on a motorcycle accident that took the life of a 59-year-old Utica woman were released Monday. According to the La Salle County Sheriff’s Office, Debbie A. Nicholson was riding west on U.S. 6 shortly after 6 p.m. Saturday as a passenger on a 2009 Harley-Davidson motorcycle with her husband, Robert J. Nicholson. According to reports, a car driven by Douglas B. Erickson, 21, of Morris, turned in front of them at East Ninth Road in rural Utica a mile east of Route 178.

13.4. A motorcyclist was seriously injured Monday afternoon when a vehicle pulled in front of him on Route 17, during rush-hour traffic. Alan Fagley, 47, who lives on Quail Court, was northbound on Route 17 on a 2005 Harley-Davidson Sportster about 5 p.m. when a 2005 Toyota RAV 4 pulled out in front of him at the T.C. Walker Road intersection, said Sgt. Greg Mathias of the Virginia State Police. Sandra Coltrain, 68, of Contesse Drive, was attempting to travel across the northbound lanes of the highway to turn south.

14.4.Darden A. “Dino” Napolitano, 60, of Freemansburg, was killed Monday night when the 2007 Harley-Davidson Road King he was driving crashed into a guardrail on Fairview Avenue in High Bridge. He was driving south when the motorcycle swerved across the northbound lane and crashed, police in the Hunterdon County borough said.

15.4. A Lake Saint Louis man was killed Wednesday afternoon in a motorcycle crash in Oregon County, Mo., authorities said. John Dameron, 64, died after he lost control of his 2008 Harley-Davidson motorcycle about 4:15 p.m. along Highway 160 at Highway 99, the Missouri Highway Patrol said. Dameron lost control on some loose gravel, ran off the road and struck an embankment. He was pronounced dead at the crash scene. The patrol said he was wearing a helmet.

16.4. A popular Frederickstown teacher and football coach has been killed in a motorcycle crash apparently caused by an SUV driver who cut him off. George Rollins taught social studies at the high school for two years and helped coach the football team. The 29-year-old died Wednesday on Missouri 67 after losing control of his Harley-Davidson motorcycle and hit a cable barrier on the highway. KSDK reports that the Missouri State Highway Patrol is looking for a woman who was driving the sport utility vehicle that cut Rollins off.

18.4. Wayne P. Gollmer, 40, was pronounced dead around 11:30 p.m. at the scene of the accident, marking the first fatal traffic crash this year in Lafayette County. Gollmer was driving east on County Highway Z northwest of Darlington when he lost control of his 2002 Harley Davidson motorcycle while going around a curve. He left the roadway and struck a fence near the road and was thrown from the motorcycle. He was not wearing a helmet.

19.4. A Cherry Valley man who crashed his Harley Davidson while riding in Janesville has died. Travis Goodin, 41, died on Sunday from injuries suffered in a crash early Friday morning. The investigation shows Goodin was going north on County Highway E when he didn’t stop at the stop sign at USH 14. Goodin then struck an embankment and was thrown off his motorcycle, landing on the ground with the motorcycle on top of him. The Rock County Sheriff’s Department says unfamiliarity with the area and alcohol are contributing factors to the accident.

19.4. John Coryea, 31, died after his 2003 Harley Davidson collided with a 2001 Chevrolet driven by Alexander Holtsclaw, 18, of Saranac, according to New York State Police. Coryea was ejected from the motorcycle and pronounced dead at the scene of the Route 374 crash.

19.4. A 53-year-old St. Leonard man who walked away from a motorcycle crash and seemingly escaped serious injury died hours later, Calvert County Sheriff’s officials said. Gerry W. Hance was riding a blue 2006 Harley Davidson Softail motorcycle east on Long Beach Drive in St. Leonard at about 12:30 a.m. Saturday when he lost control, ran off the road and struck a tree. Alcohol may have contributed to the crash, authorities said.

19.4. Kelly Krell was the passenger on a 2005 Harley-Davidson driven by her husband, 49-year-old Jeff Krell. The pair were headed west on 268th Street toward 481st Avenue near the entrance to Iowa’s Gitchie Manitou State Park when Jeff Krell lost control of the bike and both riders flew into the intersection’s west ditch. Kelly Krell died Sunday night. Neither was wearing a helmet.

20.4. A Suffolk man died Saturday night when high winds blew him off his motorcycle as he crossed the James River Bridge. Garlon Turner, 60, of Suffolk, was riding a 2007 Harley-Davidson Screaming Eagle southbound across the bridge in high winds when the accident occurred, according to Sgt. Michelle Cotten, a spokesperson for the Virginia State Police.

20.4. One person is dead after a two vehicle accident in Carroll Monday afternoon. The accident occurred as 53-year-old Marvin Danner of Carroll was riding a Harley Davidson motorcycle east bound on Highway 30 when a Region XII Council of Government car driven by 54-year-old Laurie Gilbert of Glidden attempted to make a left hand turn onto Bella Vista Drive from the other direction. Danner was ejected from the motorcycle and was pronounced dead at the scene.

22.4. A 70-year-old Ontario motorcyclist died Wednesday when he drove a Harley-Davidson over a steep, 50-foot cliff east of Barstow. Jerry Silvera was pronounced dead at the scene west of Yermo Road at Fort Irwin Road, San Bernardino County coroner’s officials said.

26.4. The Florida Highway Patrol identified the motorcyclist who was killed Monday afternoon following a head-on collision along a rural highway. Robert Thomas Beitel, 66, of Washington Township, Mich., lost control of his 2001 Harley Davidson and crashed into an oncoming vehicle shortly before 3:30 p.m.

26.4. Lewis County Sheriff’s Investigators  say excessive speed while negotiating a curve caused the 2001 Harley Davidson motorcycle, operated by Richard F. MacCue Jr, 46, Great Bend to lose control and veer off the Pine Grove Rd in the Town of Greig at around 3:45 Saturday Afternoon.

27.4. Authorities say a 49-year-old man and his dog died instantly when he crashed his motorcycle head-on into a school bus filled with children in Northern California. California Highway Patrol spokesman Doug Garrett said an Oroville police officer tried to pull the unidentified man over in his Harley Davidson after he drove through a red light on Friday afternoon. Oroville is about 70 miles north of Sacramento. The man apparently sped off and crashed into the bus after crossing over the yellow line. A Chihuahua tucked inside his jacket also died.

I hope this list of fatal accidents in April 2010 is complete, but I fear it may not be. If you know of other tragedies involving drivers of a Harley Davidson motorcycle, please feel free to add them in their memories in the comment fields.

Have a safe journey


5 Responses to “Requiescant in pace – April 2010”

  1. I’m impressed, I must say. Seldom do I encounter a blog that’s both equally educative and interesting, and without
    a doubt, you have hit the nail on the head. The problem is something that too few men and women are
    speaking intelligently about. Now i’m very happy I found this during my hunt for something relating to this.

  2. If you love all people! And you lose someone, who knows how you love them all. Then that should be something that all, should know. He died June 28, 2010. A horrific ending, to a incredible human! and even that he was a beautiful male.If they die, in vain! Then who ultimately pays the price for life. So what if you were not intoxicated, while turning left or right. Should that convey to all its okay to KILL! “At least the “drunks” had a excuse.” Why are sober “hired by the local state governments” are knowingly by prosecuters, not deemed murder!

  3. My husband, Pastor Wayne Carvell age 56 died on July 10 while riding his Harley Road King.
    I wish he would have attended my cousin’s wedding with me instead. Now my son has bought a motorcycle.

    • j.d.hance Says:

      i don’t know what to say but i’m so sorry for your loss and your family loss as far as my opinion on your son getting a bike just talk to him and let him know his responsibility ! of enjoying the road . IT’S NOTHING LIKE IT!! GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY


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