I am sorry that I never met Dorothy Rice.
Dorothy, or “Dottie” to her family and friends, was an avid cyclist who achieved her dream this summer when she and her husband Don rode their bicycles across the country.
You can read all about their journey from Staunton,Va., to Florence, Ore., here. It is an amazing achievement for bicyclists of any age, but Dottie was 64.
Sadly, Dottie, an Endicott resident, was killed earlier this month on state Route 434 in Owego when she was struck from behind by a vehicle while doing what she loved best – riding her bicycle, according to a report in the Star-Gazette.
She was pronounced dead at a Binghamton hospital.
Dottie was struck while riding on the shoulder of the road, and the investigation continues. I’m having a hard time understanding why the 41-year-old driver has not yet been charged, but I will wait to learn the results of the investigation before I say more.
This sad story is just the latest example of the dangers facing cyclists in the Twin Tiers.
I’d like to take a minute and celebrate the life of Dorothy “Dottie” Rice.
Fortunately, WBNG-TV in Binghamton had a great look at Dottie’s life here.
Dorothy, a retired sign language teacher, is survived by her beloved husband and riding partner, Don, a son and daughter-in-law, two sisters and a brother.
Dottie was a member of the Southern Tier Bicycle Club for more than 30 years, and she made her greatest journey – 4,000 miles from coast to coast – with her husband Don from May 12 through Aug. 12 of this year.
Riding a bike across the country is a remarkable achievement, and for a couple in their 60s, it is even more remarkable!
“She came back from that and said it was the most difficult experience of her life,” Dottie’s niece, Brienne Schmidt, told WBNG. “Cycling almost everyday, sometimes 50 to 75 miles daily at 64 years old, but she said it was the grandest experience of her life.”
So I hope my fellow cyclists will take a few moments tonight and reflect on the life of a remarkable woman who lived life to the fullest.
Dottie, rest in peace.
My friends in Elmira, Corning and the Twin Tiers, let’s continue to be careful out there.