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Joliet Bicyclist Died during New Lenox Event; a 'Terrible Tragedy': Official

James Lorenc was participating in the Will County Forest Preserve District's Cruise the Creek event Sunday when the accident occurred.

Man falls off a bicycle and later dies of head injuries during the 2013 Cruise the Creek event.
Man falls off a bicycle and later dies of head injuries during the 2013 Cruise the Creek event.

The 68-year-old Joliet man who lost control of his bicycle and died later of head injuries was one of nearly 1,900 riders who participated in the annual autumn Cruise the Creek, organized by the Forest Preserve District of Will County on Oct. 5 in New Lenox.  

According to Lt. Tracy Phillips of the Forest Preserve Police, the accident involving James F. Lorenc happened about 11:45 a.m. at Hickory Creek Barrens Nature Preserve, Route 30 and Schoolhouse Road in New Lenox. He had barely gotten a started on the trail that leads to two loops—6-miles and 11-miles long. While approaching the bridge that crosses over Route 30, said Phillips, "he was going down a hill; went to slow down and hit the brakes too hard. The back wheel fishtailed and he flipped over the handle bars" and hit his head.

READ: 68-year-old Man Fell Off a Bike, Dies in Fall in New Lenox

He wasn't wearing a helmet, said Phillips. The New Lenox Fire Protection District was on the scene in a matter of minutes, she said. "It's just a terrible tragedy. Our hearts go out to the family and friends."

Lorenc was not alone when he fell. He was with a group of family and friends. Some had already moved ahead when the accident happened, she said.

Alerts posted about steep hills

In preparation for the annual event, temporary signs were posted to alert riders of steep hills along the trail loops, and "Forest Preserve sentinels were stationed throughout to warn riders of potentially dangerous spots on the trail," Phillips said.


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Herc October 07, 2013 at 08:15 PM
Very sad, may he R.I.P.

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