Wednesday morning, Henry Mandrell geared up for a weekly tradition: a group bike ride.
“It’s a tight-knit community. Everybody pretty much knows everybody. There’s a group ride pretty much every day of the week — Saturday rides, Sunday rides,” said the co-owner of Summit Cycles on Two Notch Road.
But this week’s ride is different. With a heavy heart, he and dozens of others are riding for a fallen friend, Justin Turner.
“Justin’s death was not because he was on a bike. He was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. It could have been somebody walking the dog or pushing a baby stroller,” said Mandrell.
Troopers say 40-year-old Turner was riding his bike when he was hit and killed by a driver who had to swerve when an unknown driver drove into the intersection without right-of-way. With Turner gone, his wife, Brooke, is left to cope with the unimaginable pain of sudden loss and the pain of another battle she’s facing: taking care of three young kids while she battles Stage Four breast cancer.
“I think, you know, everybody in the community is, you know, come together to help out. They realize what Brooke’s going to have to go through going forward,” said Mandrell.
As donations, well-wishes, and prayers continue, Mandrell is doing his small part: a weekly group bike ride transformed into a memorial ride to remember a dear friend and fellow cyclist.
“I don’t know if I’ve anybody nice as Justin Turner,” he said. “A lot of time, when somebody dies, you realize what you’ve lost. I think, with somebody like Justin, we already knew who he was.”
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