A life-long stuggle with type one diabetes that encouraged a Quebec man and his children to ride their bicycles across Canada ended tragically in Manitoba on Sunday.
Canadian authorities report that two bicyclists were struck and killed on the Trans-Canada Highway as they participated in the Ride of a Lifetime fund-raiser for the Junior Diabetes Research Foundation of Canada. Two others were injured.
Dead are Daniel Hurtubise, 50, the bike trip's organizer, and a 45-year-old friend. [The friend was later identified as Robert Carrier of Kelowna, B.C.] Daniel's son, Alexandre, 19, and daughter, Sophia, 16, (at left and right above) were injured.
The four were struck from behind by a 27-year-old Virden man driving a Honda Civic, according to the Winnipeg CTV.
Authorities have not released the name of the other dead cyclist, identified as a friend of Hurtubise and a 45-year-old from Kelowna, BC.
Alex and Sophia were taken to a hospital in Virden with non life-threatening injuries. The son was later released while the daughter was transferred to Brandon Hospital, according to the CNews website.
The collision occurred on the Trans-Canada Highway east of Virden on Sunday.
The Ride of a Lifetime was Hurtubise's idea. The 50-year-old Quebec man who had been living with Type 1 diabetes since the age of 15. According to their Ride of a Lifetime blog published at the Reader's Digest website — he had been preparing for the bike tour for three years with Alex and Sophia.
You can share your condolences for the families, friends and supporters of those killed and injured at the Ride of a Lifetime blog.
Also, you can donate to the Ride of a Lifetime at the Junior Diabetes website.
In addition to the exposure the charity ride was getting from its alliance with the Junior Diabetes foundation and the blog on Reader's Digest, it was also to be the subject of an upcoming documentary in the fall on Canal Vie in Canada.
The Ride of a Lifetime team had covered about 1,200 miles since leaving Stanley Park in Vancouver on June 14. The goal was to raise $500,000 in donations and arrive at St. John's, Newfoundland.
On Saturday, Sonia had posted that riding through the rain had tired everyone, but their spirits had improved as the weather turned sunny. Her father, Dan, wrote earlier that he'd had a bad day dealing with his diabetes:
“The whole day I had a terrible headache, I was weak and could not think straight. Alex, Sonia Robert and François were very concerned, everyone was very quit and did not know what to do, I told them that despite the situation the day had to go on. A bad day for a diabetic trying to control his/her energy is much worst than riding 177km.”
According to published reports on Monday, police had not released any details of the collision nor identified the driver.
Thanks to Michael for the heads up