The Long Beach Press-Telegram is reporting that a man apparently died as a result of what was described as a major medical emergency during the bicycle segment of today’s Long Beach Marathon.
According to the paper, the man, who has not been publicly identified, suffered a cardiac arrest while riding near the intersection of Ocean Blvd and Prospect Ave in Belmont Shore at 6:30 am Sunday.
Despite the effort of paramedics, he was pronounced dead after being transported to a local hospital.
No other information is available at this time.
This is the 62nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 25th in Los Angeles County.
Update: News like this is always tragic; it somehow seems even worse when it’s someone who’s well known in the cycling community.
While the victim still has not been publicly identified, I received the following email from Richard Rosenthal Monday evening.
I was on the ride with my girlfriend, and we both witnessed the paramedics giving CPR to a cyclist on ground. It really shook my up, as he was a older man in full kit, much as I am. It was on my mind the remainder of the ride, and when I found out Monday morning that the cyclist had died I was even more shaken.The news just got worse for me personally. I found out that the deceased was my friend Steve Hernandez. We both served together on the Board of Directors of Lightning Velo in Long Beach. Steve was one of the kindest people I have ever met….an imposing bear of a man with long hair and beard, but his personality couldn’t have been more opposite. Always quick with a smile and a laugh, he was one of the most beloved members of our club, and he will be missed sorely.
Update: The LA County coroner’s office confirms his identity as 59-year old Steven Hernandez.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for Steve Hernandez and his family.
Thanks to Danny Gamboa and Richard Rosenthal for the heads-up.