Vol. 22, No. 3 The Official Newsletter of the Tyler Bicycle Club March 2004
The Longest RideBy Terry Howlett
It was a perfect Saturday afternoon November 1, 2003…not a cloud in the sky, no wind, and temperature in the 60s. All my weekend chores were done, and I felt I could ride forever. I chose a 25-mile route west of Tyler to finish before dark. I had ridden the route hundreds of times since joining the Tyler Bike Club and completing some long rides like Beauty & Beast, Hotter’n Hell Hundred, and two 250 mile National Bike Ride for the Family charity rides. I never dreamed it would be six weeks before I returned home from this ride.
The unthinkable happened! Before I could flinch, a F-150 truck struck my left side (50-60 mph?) knocking my mangled Cannondale 100 feet and me 35 feet. It occurred near the airport where I was eastbound on the shoulder of SH 64 crossing the entrance to FM 279. The westbound driver had darted through a line of oncoming traffic from First Monday Trade Days in Canton never seeing me till I bloodied his front grill. I was grateful he stopped to render aid.
After the crunch of flesh and bones, I remember a nurse shouting in my face, “Terry stay with us!” I was bleeding to death (lost 40% of my blood) from three compound fractures to my left arm, thigh, and ankle. I was ready to die…at peace with God and all my relationships. However, I knew I would live when my wife, Nina, held my head and prayed as the helicopter took me to the ETMC Level 1 Trauma Center.
Drawing from DPS Report
The Texas Drivers Handbook, page 13-3 says,
“The most common motorist caused car-bicycle collision is a motorist turning left in the face of oncoming bicycle traffic. Oncoming bicycle traffic is often overlooked or its speed misjudged.”
So what lessons can I pass along to other riders? Things I did right:
I. Wore a helmet
II. Wore bright clothes (TBC has the best shirt)
III. Reflectors & flashing lights (even in the daytime)
IV. Rearview mirror
V. Kept to the far right
More things I could do:
VI. Ride with a group
VII. Expect the unexpected
My surgeon says that I’m lucky to be alive and still luckier to have my arm and leg. I rejoice in the prognosis of full recovery to ride again. I am full of thanks to TBC members who prayed, visited, sent cards, flowers, called and encouraged in so many thoughtful ways. I recall a couple of funny times. (Above, left: Photo of Terry at ETMC Rehab.)
Dave and Eric Williams were in my room when a trauma doctor stopped for a visit. He made the statement that he knew every detail about my life. Eric came back quickly, “Bet you don’t know what kind of bike he rides.” Also, one night Butch Willingham showed up when I was on some strong morphine. I looked up at him dressed in a three-piece suit and thought he was one of my pallbearers.
Thanks for Tyler Bike Club friends on my longest ride.
David L. Williams
Phone/Fax: (903) 531-9394
Spoke Signals is published monthly by the Tyler Bicycle Club.
If you have an special requests, tips, corrections, or suggestions for Spoke Signals, please send them to:
c/o Kahne Walker, editor
956 CR 3470
Hawkins, TX 75765
Tyler Bicycle Club Officers
President: Butch Willingham
Vice President: Rick Hensley
Secretary: Frances Singleton
Treasurer: Tal Glenn
Membership: Galén Williams
Tyler Bicycle Club committees
State Park Coordinator: Roger Singleton
Web Master: Jim Walker
The deadline for submitting articles and advertisement material for publication is the 20th of each month.
Dave Williams (club meeting); Gary Lesniewski (Freeze Your Fanny ride), Volta ao Algarve photo by AFP. Terry Howlett article/layout courtesy of Dave Williams. “Bus Driver Sentenced” story courtesy of Frances Singleton.
Well, February 7, 2004, I went to Longview to Freeze My Fanny Off and was quite successful in doing so. I believe it was the first time in many years that the Ride actually lived up to its name. The temp when I looked on that Saturday morn at 6:00 a.m. was 22 degrees. By 10:00am ride time I think it was in the low 30’s. It was the coldest ride I ever been on. Brrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!!!!! In spite of the weather I had a good time and was quite surprised at how comfortable I was by layering with the proper type clothing. Some of the TBC folks I saw were: both Joe C.’s (Canal and Cunningham), both Lesniewskis (Gary and Nate), Butch Willingham, Bill Cornelius, she Walkers (Kahne and Jim), Matt Robb, James Hughes, “Super Dave” Williams, Eric & Galen Williams, and probably others I can’t remember. Tto say the least, TBC was very well represented.
Speaking of rides: our Beauty & Beast ride is just over the next hill and promises to be bigger and better than ever. I attended my first B & B meeting a while back and was truly amazed at the many different needs there are and what all is involved in organizing and putting on this event. Listen, folks! There are a lot of places where a TBC member can jump in and help. I intend to make it a family affair and have enlisted the help of the wife and kids. I would encourage you to do the same. Last year I believe there were over 650 riders and this year could very well surpass that number. There will be a need for flaggers at intersections; Galén will need help with organizing and staffing the rest stops; Roger will need help in supplying the rest stops with food and equipment; there are all sorts of areas where folks could help by making phone calls and face-to-face calls to folks that might be interested in sponsoring the event and many other opportunities. If you would like to pitch in and help and be a part of the fun and festivities then get in touch with me, Eric, Galen, or Dave Williams or you could even get with “George W. Butch” (a.k.a. Butch Willingham).
This is my third year in the club and I have enjoyed meeting and making new friends and if I haven’t met you yet maybe I will sometime soon. I am the Club VP for 2004 and look forward to this coming riding season.
January 1st to December 1st: $20
July 1st to December 1st: $10
Renewal Date: January 1st
|Mail Checks to:
Tyler Bicycle Club
P. O. Box 6734
Tyler, TX 75711
Former Champion Marco Pantani Found Dead
Cycling fans were saddened to learn of the death of former champion Marco Pantani. Hotel workers discovered Pantani’s body in his room in Rimini, where he was in residence.
Police reports indicated there were drugs found in Pantani’s room, all of which had been prescribed to treat the effects of depression. Although police have largely ruled out suicide, questions remain due to notes left behind by Pantani.
Tens of thousands of “tifosi” attended Pantani’s funeral in Cesenatico. Fellow cyclists such as Mario Cippolini paid homage to “Il Pirato” and noted his contributions to the sport of cycling.
American fans’ greatest memory of Pantani will likely remain the epic battle between eventual Tour champion Lance Armstrong and “The Pirate” on Mont Ventoux in 2000.
New Sponsors Line Up for USPS-Berry Floor
Two new sponsors will be featured on the USPS-Berry Floor jersey for 2004. The Silicon Valley microprocessor giant Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) logo will be prominently displayed, likely as a way to promote the perennial second place chip maker (to Intel) new AMD Athlon 64 bit microprocessor. Industry insiders told Cyclingnews that AMD is perhaps a year ahead of chip giant Intel in the vital new 64 bit processor market and so what better way to get noticed on a global scale but to put its logo on Lance Armstrong's shoulders and posterior.
Outdoor Life Network will also sponsor the USPS-Berry Floor squad this season: OLN will debut a weekly 13 part half hour High Definition TV documentary on five time Tour de France Champion Lance Armstrong and the United States Postal Service Pro Cycling Team. OLN's show should provide viewers with unprecedented access to Lance and the USPS-Berry Floor squad, not only focus on racing, but perhaps inspired by MTV's "Real World" franchise, but go "behind the scenes showing what transpires when the team members are off their bikes."
—Tim Maloney, European Editor, CyclingNews
Bus Driver is Sentenced in Killing of Cyclist
An Anna man whose vehicle stuck a nationally known marathon cyclist in May on a Collin County rural road was sentenced Monday to 180 days in the county jail and five years' probation for leaving the scene of the fatal crash. The sentence was part of a plea agreement between Robert Arvard Haynes, 41, and prosecutors in the crash that led to the death of Larry Schwartz, 42. Under the agreement, Mr. Haynes must also perform 300 hours of community service and pay a $500 fine. In addition, Mr. Haynes must give up his commercial driver's license . A grand jury indicted Mr. Haynes last year on a felony charge of failure to stop and render aid after the school bus he was driving knocked Mr. Schwartz to the ground on FM1461. He later died at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas.
— Stella M. Chavez, Tuesday, February 10, 2004
The Dallas Morning News
USPS Take 1-2-3 in Algarve TT; Armstrong Set to Take Win
Algarve, Portugal, February 21. Lance Armstrong took the lead of the Volta ao Algarve with a victory in the individual Time Trial today. Armstrong finished one second ahead of teammate Floyd Lands (pictured above, with Lance, earlier in the week), with Victor Hugo Peña making it a Postal sweep by taking third place