Robert Swanson struck Henry Hunter in a Port St. Lucie, Florida bicycle accident on Tuesday, news sources report. Swanson’s car reportedly struck 17-year-old Hunter’s bicycle from behind. Hunter sustained critical injuries and was taken to a nearby hospital, where he later died. Swanson, 82, has not yet been charged with a crime. Police are currently conducting an investigation to learn the complete details of the accident. It is unclear whether Swanson will be cited or charged as part of the deadly crash, nor is it clear whether Hunter’s relatives will file a suit.
According to reports, the accident occurred in the 2200 block of Southeast Tiffany Avenue. Tiffany Avenue is a relatively small, two-lane road that does not have a marked bicycle lane. Some portions of the road are, however, boarded by large sidewalks. Many Florida bicyclists are unaware that they are legally allowed to ride on the sidewalk and have the same rights as pedestrians. Hunter was reportedly on a portion of Tiffany Avenue that did not have a sidewalk or a bike lane at the time of the accident.
Hunter and his 18-year-old friend were biking in the westbound lanes of SE Tiffany Avenue around 6:55 Tuesday morning just before the crash; reports say the two teens were on their way to Port St. Lucie High School. Swanson approached the teens from behind in his Ford Mustang and struck Hunter, sources indicate. The collision allegedly sent Hunter flying back into the car, where he smashed his head against the windshield. Hunter’s friend was not struck.
Paramedics rushed Hunter to the Port St. Lucie Hospital following the crash. Doctors initially put the teen on life support, but his mother later made the difficult decision of taking Hunter off the support. “Proudest mother I could be to have a son so brave,” Hunter’s mother said. Hunter had planned to join to the army following graduation, sources say. His mother says Hunter was an organ donor and his organs have all already found matches. “Everything, even his bones, his skin,” his mother said. “They are even giving his mandible to help a little girl with a cleft palate. There is nothing that is going to go to waste.”
Hunter was not the only teen to die in a traffic accident recently. Hunter Sorensen was killed in an Orange Beach skateboarding accident on Sunday, reports say. The fatal crash occurred after 14-year-old Sorensen lost control of his skateboard and veered into traffic. Information regarding that driver’s identity was not immediately available following the crash; the driver has not been charged with a crime.
According to reports, the accident occurred at Perdido Beach Boulevard, where Sorensen and his friend were skateboarding. Reports say Sorensen was wearing safety equipment while he was skateboarding. At some point, Sorensen began to skate down a parking garage ramp and quickly picked up speed. When he reached the bottom of the ramp, he was likely going too fast to stop, and he veered onto the boulevard and into oncoming traffic. A car fatally struck Sorenson on the road.