Thursday, May 14, 2009

Cyclist Killed While Riding for Charity

By Patricia Adams

A 40-year-old cyclist, raising money for charity, was killed after he collided with a 10-wheel-truck owned by the Metropolitan Lumber Company at Lefferts Boulevard and Jamaica Avenue.

Stephen Hodnett, a native of Dublin, was peddling around the globe to raise money for a project from the Lion’s Club of Canada. The goal of the fund raising - to facilitate the pairing of seeing-eye dogs with the blind.

Hodnett had cycled through other world cities on his mission. Among them were Paris, Moscow, Tokyo, and a host of others. According to published reports, one of Hodnett’s fellow “charity riders”, Gavin White of Newfoundland, told reporters that Hodnett “loved cycling” and that the bicycle he was riding had “been all over the world.”

The pair of athletes picked charities and rode along subway routes to promote it. Back in their hometowns they had enlisted the aid of family, friends and other contacts to sponsor their ride. They secured donations based on the number of subway stops they covered on the tour.

They had put off coming to New York in anticipation of how rewarding it would be. Their goal was to go to places that tourists would not likely frequent. Among their stops was Richmond Hill. Hodnett was rushed to Jamaica Hospital. He was pronounced dead, minutes after the crash.

Police say the driver is not facing any charges.

The Forum Newsgroup/photo by MICHAEL O’KANE

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