The driver who said he's responsible for a hit and run accident that killed a young woman from Richmond, is expected in court Monday. Elias Webb, 30, turned himself in earlier this week. However, Sunday evening was about the victim. A swarm of about a hundred bicyclists pedaled in 24-year-old Lanie Kruszewski's honor.
Flickers of light glided through the dark streets of the Fan, beginning at the Laurel Street overlook. Those lights shined for Lanie. Her mother, Patty Kruszewski, and her loved ones also rode, left coveting her memory forever.
"When she walked into a room, she didn't just walk...she bounced," said Patty with a smile, tears in her eyes. She sat on a bike, holding a helmet close.
Lanie's last ride on River Road was unfathomable. Webb expressed remorse in a statement to police. However, some aren't consoled by his taking four days to come forward. Webb had 11 traffic tickets over the last four years, according to court documents.
Diallo Martin says he borrowed a bike to participate in the remembrance ride. Martin knew Lanie through her boyfriend.
"On cloud nine all the time, bubbly personality…super caring," described Martin, of Lanie's personality.
However, the ride wasn't only about Lanie's memory. Riders made sure to express how important it is to create a safer relationship between drivers and cyclists on the road.
"I've heard from so many people this week who have told me that since Lanie's accident, they have changed their behavior… that they used to be very impatient when they'd get behind bikers," said Patty.
"…To make a statement of what still needs to be done in our society. To preserve safety for cyclists, pedestrians… who all share the road," said Robert Selby, a rider who didn't know Lanie, but wanted to show his support by attending the ride.
"Lanie lost her whole life. All we're asking is you wait a few seconds," said Patty.
Those few seconds might have spared such a cherished life.
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