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On Feb. 25, an incident I can only describe as a senseless tragedy struck a group of road riders in an Arizona suburb.
Police in Goodyear, Ariz. took a 26-year-old male into custody after he drove his Ford F-250 through a group of 20 cyclists riding on a bridge. The incident killed two riders and injured 17 others, of which 11 required hospital treatment.
Sixty-one-year-old Karen Malisa died on the scene, and 65-year-old David Kero died on the way to the hospital, authorities said. The driver, 26-year-old Pedro Quintana-Lujan of Phoenix, faces a slew of charges, and the cycling community looks to pick up the pieces.
That’s the purpose of a GoFundMe started by one local rider. David Herzog of Goodyear took up the cause, an “injury fund [which] will 100% be sent to the riders that went to the hospital and the two families that lost their loved ones.”
In the four days since the campaign went live, over 1,400 donations have poured in, totaling over $143,000.
The post noted gratitude for the “overwhelming” financial generosity and the emotional support many donors have included via notes.
The incident has garnered national attention. In a Feb. 28 email to BikeRumor, one advocate for the group said it hopes to utilize the coverage to “ask for patience and courtesy from drivers, and to emphasize the close-knit nature of cycling clubs and groups around the country.”
Of the injured riders, four remained in the hospital — one in critical condition — as of the email’s receipt. Anyone can donate to the recovery fund in any amount.