SCOTT DAVID PEOPLES
1986 - 2006
2 days before Christmas i had to say goodbye to a close friend of mine. A cyclist with whom i have shared a coach and many a good day with over the 4 or so years that i have known him. He was killed, in a senseless accident, while out training on Friday December 15. He was a brilliant kid and will be sorely missed. Testament to his and his families popularity were the 300+ crowd who packed the Shepparton Football Club to pay tribute to a kid who had the world at his feet and the desire to achieve great things in a sport that he loved.
Some of them may not have ever spoken to Scott, they were there just because they understood what it meant to be a rider and the sacrifices that we make and the risks that we take everyday when we strap on our helmets. Im going to use this blog, that hopefully some people read, to encourage us all to take care when we are driving our cars and riding our bikes. Too often over the last 2 weeks, since the accident, i have seen people driving and sending text messages....... talking on there phones....... involved in serious conversations with a passenger and not watching the road.......
We all have a responsibility, everytime we get behind the wheel of a 1 ton weapon to think hard about the implications that a few seconds of distraction or not concentrating can have. It can and does cause the destruction of families, the loss of innocent and brilliant lives, the break down of communities and if you think for one second that you wont wake in a cold sweat every night for the rest of your life with that face in your mind.....you are sadly mistaken.
Its not just drivers....i was horrified to hear, when i arrived home, that a group of riders had killed a pedestrian after running a red light. We owe it to ourselves as cyclists to stand up for the rights of the weak and powerless on the roads.....that means as a cyclist when confronted with a stream of cars and for the pedestrians confronted by a stream of riders.
No one is right when they break the laws of the road. I have been, in the past, as guilty as anyone....but please for the sake of your own lives, mine and all the other people that we know and love in this world.....pay attention and do the right thing because the benefits of getting where you are headed 5 seconds or even 10 minutes earlier do not outweigh the cost of stealing a life.
To Shane, Wendy, Ricky and Erin.....words can not express my sympathy for your loss. Scott was a brilliant kid and he will be missed dearly by those who knew him. May his spirit, passion and determination live on in those that were touched by him. I know that i will never forget the small kid with the big heart.
We can all change our behaviour and help to influence those around us, lets get about doing it before it is too late.
Merry Christmas and a safe new year.....