Archive for drunk driver

On the Seventh Wave

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 1, 2015 by runmyssierun

Much time has passed since my last blog update. Much more has happened… good and bad and many decisions as a result of them.

Today is the first day of March. March is Colon Cancer Awareness month and I would be remissed if I went without asking everyone I knew if they knew what was up their butt. So, What’s up YOUR butt???

Unfortunately, as I checked my facebook feed this morning, I found that my Fraternity Phi Sigma Kappa Big Brother, Joey Soto, has rectal cancer. This is proof that cancer IS prejudice. It picks the best people on Earth. See, in college, Joey was this handsome, gentle, funny, debonair, green-eyed cowboy that all the girls swooned over on campus. I was president of Delta Zeta Sorority and my college boyfriend was a Phi Sig. Joey was his big brother and because it was in his nature to go the extra mile, he looked after me as part of his duty, as well. I never got into trouble and no one messed with me. I think a lot of that had to do with people knowing never to mess with a cowboy from Central Texas.

That's Joey. The one with the green eyes and dangerous guns!!! These guys showed up at all our DZ events, protected us and always  infused an overdose of fun and giggles into everything we did together.

That’s Joey. The one with the green eyes and dangerous guns!!! These guys showed up at all our DZ events, protected us and always infused an overdose of fun and giggles into everything we did together.

How he shared his news to the world via facebook was one of the most incredible posts I’ve ever read. I’ll share just a little part of it (I hope he doesn’t mind):

So I was talking to God last night. Yes, we talk often… Most of the times, it is about you guys. We have a good laugh and then move on to other topics, but he started telling me last night some things that he wanted me to share with you. He also told me to remind you that I am sick right now so you HAVE to Listen.
He said:
1. Take time every once in a while for those you love. Maybe, once a week, do something they really want to do. Whether that be go walking down the Riverwalk on a Saturday afternoon? Or go to a Plant Nursery? Just let the world stop every once in a while and smile. You will realize how beautiful it is sometimes.
2. Take care of your health. He told me that I am very lucky that he has given me the OPPORTUNITY to fight this and not just be gone one day. For that I have been given a chance to fight. AND I promised him I WILL FIGHT !!!!!!!
3. Talk to him. Yes, he is the Big Boss, the CEO, and all that, but his door is always open. He said he even had the door removed from his office so it is always open and he is ready to listen.
That is all he really told me last night. That OOHH and also not too worry at all. He’s got this for me and I will be ok.


I celebrated my 45th birthday this week. OMG!!! Did I just say my real age… out loud for the whole world to see and scrutinize and judge???? YES! YES I SURE DID!!! There was a time, not long ago, that made me cringe each time my birthday came around. Now, today, I no longer take my birthday for granted nor can I afford to ignore the blessing of another birthday… because the alternative is just something that I nor my family can handle right now. I am FORTY FIVE and am more blessed now than I have ever been before and I thank GOD and the world for allowing my silly age issues to annoy them this long. Won’t happen again. A lot of people don’t get to live this long. A lot of people who do live this long haven’t lived as well as I have. I honestly feel better now than I did at 25 and 100x better than I did at 35!!!!

My birthday wish was for people to donate $10 to #TEAMSARAH and the blood cancer treatment grant that our local LLS chapter is hoping to have named after her instead of posting a facebook birthday online for me. I had almost 1,000 social media birthday wishes and raised just over $500 in birthday wish donations from it. BEST GIFT EVER!!!! Thank you!!! Most people don’t have 1000 facebook friends so for me to have this many people send so many good vibes on my special day AND donate was validation to me of how awesomely I am blessed. Words can never thank everyone enough. I am overwhelmed with gratitude and love.

I was also contacted by the American Cancer Society this last week. They told me that they wanted to honor my mother, Mimi Cardenas, my family and what I have done in her memory by naming me their honoree at Cattle Baron’s Ball this year.

Geez!!! Does this get any better????

Yes, but I’ll leave this for another post.

And now the bad stuff but with the silver lining… because that’s how I do things.

About a month ago, shortly after my last post, three of my teammates were cycling and were hit by a drunk driver. Two are recovering well and the third suffered a traumatic brain injury, a broken back and a tough struggle to come back to a normal life again. This was the morning that we were all supposed to go ride in memory of Eddie Arguelles who was also hit by a drunk driver almost a year ago now.

The silver lining? It’s this: I wish you could have seen the waiting room at the hospital that morning with all our teammates there. Holding hands in prayer, we became more bonded and unified for Christina and for our cause that we are so passionate about.

However, I did make the personal choice – after much discussion with my family – that I would step away from Team in Training this season. I will NOT be participating in Ironman Victoria this June. I WILL CONTINUE TO FUNDRAISE AND I WILL CONTINUE TO SUPPORT LLS, TEAM IN TRAINING AND ALL THINGS THAT SUPPORT CANCER AWARENESS AND THE DREAM I HAVE TO LIVE IN A WORLD WITHOUT CANCER. And yes, I’ll post more about this later in another blog post.

In the mean time… the training continues. And the support is overwhelming!!! If you are planning on participating in the Capital of Texas Triathlon #captextri, or Oceanside Tri, I ask that you please pick me as your Ambassador when asked how you found out about the event in the registration form. LifeTime Triathlon will make a donation for each registration that chooses me in support of helping me live in a world without cancer. Come on! Give it a TRI!

Choose Myssie Cardenas-Barajas as your ambassador and LifeTime Triathlon will make a donation to help #TEAMSARAH and support me in my journey to live in a world without cancer.

Choose Myssie Cardenas-Barajas as your ambassador and LifeTime Triathlon will make a donation to help #TEAMSARAH and support me in my journey to live in a world without cancer.

 

Until then… find me on the seventh wave.

What’s the right thing to say?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 12, 2014 by runmyssierun
Funeral visitation for John Zess will be at Rudy Garza Funeral Home. They are located at 1702 E. Harrison Avenue in Harlingen, TX 78550. Visitation will be on Saturday, September 13 from 12noon – 9pm. A private viewing for the family will be on Friday

Funeral visitation for John Zess will be at Rudy Garza Funeral Home. They are located at 1702 E. Harrison Avenue in Harlingen, TX 78550. Visitation will be on Saturday, September 13 from 12noon – 9pm. A private viewing for the family will be on Friday

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“You’re the first person I thought to call,” he said. (I won’t disclose his name)

I had some serious thought provoking conversations regarding the safety of cyclists in South Texas. A close friend of John Zess called me this morning. Clearly he was having a tough time dealing with the loss of his cycling buddy of many years. He admitted bursting out into a loud cry shortly before he called. He knew I had just recently experienced those exact same feelings not too long ago with Eddie Arguelles’ tragic cycling death.

“People don’t understand until it happens to them,” he said while his normally booming, strong voice cracked with emotion.

And he is so right. People really DON’T understand until it happens to them. Sadly, that means that many more will die on our streets before our community will get it. And then it will take something incredibly awful – I’m talking dreadfully, unspeakable awfulness – to happen to THEM in order for them to change their bad habits.

“What’s the right thing to say?” he asked me. “Do you tell people not to ride in the dark?”

We delved into a conversation that led us further into a confusing mess similar to the chicken and the egg. What do you address first? Who do you address first? What do you tell the other party in the meanwhile?

We have become so fixated on blame that we have become blind to the solution that is actually quite simple. But of course, us humans seem to complicate that solution. What is the solution?

Simple. Follow the law.

If we just didn’t drink all night long during the football game – over the limit of the law = All 50 states have now set .08% Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) as the legal limit for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) or commercial drivers, a BAC of .04% can result in a DUI conviction nationwide – then we wouldn’t have drunk drivers hitting cyclists or pedestrians or other cars. Simple, right? Put the drink down. And if you can’t put the drink down… give your keys to someone who didn’t drink (or smoke or snort or dope up)… AT ALL.

Simple, right?

Put the phone down. Simple, right?

Don’t speed. Simple, right?

Pay attention. Simple, right?

But let’s face it… life isn’t that simple. Even if cyclists do EVERYTHING possible to follow the law and EVERYTHING possible to be safe and visible, a black and white law that seems to simply state what should be legal and what should be illegal can be interpreted a completely different way by a good attorney or jury or a judge. And while we’re at it, let’s face it again… the life of the cyclist lost can never truly be given justice nor can a monetary value be given to their worth nor will their loss ever be felt as deeply as it should by that judge nor the person who took it away.

In fact, since you and I are being blunt with each other, let’s talk about the attitudes that we have towards cyclists on the road, cyclists who are hit and cyclists who are killed.

Now, let me be clear about this – THIS IS MY OPINION and it comes from what I have witnessed personally – I love my community and proud of how well it has overcome many of it’s growing pains because we really have grown quickly in a few number of years. The news headlines gets it’s ratings from talking about political leaders abusing power and going to jail but the political leaders that I’ve associated with have actually become a PART of the community and have kicked the ivory tower to the curb, joined its citizens on bike rides or runs and even marathons and have become active in pursuing infrastructure improvements for encouraging physical activity in our community. Our local police have protected my run group along the trail and have stopped alongside the road several times to render aid to a fellow cyclist who didn’t go over the tracks correctly or simply got a flat tire.

My friends, neighbors and friends I have yet to meet have become inspired with our community health kick and have cautiously joined the wave. They watch with wide eyes as people in big trucks or SUVs zoom by cyclists honking, cussing, throwing half empty beer bottles at them and even worse… intentionally swerving their way to knock them down. They see the local news anchors skim through the auto/ped fatality so that we can have time to discuss the NFL game this coming weekend or car that was abandoned in La Joya with the load of pot in the back seat. Everywhere we look, we see validation that the life of a cyclist seems less valuable than that of any other human.

It has become almost a daily ritual that someone tells me that I should not be riding my bike on the road.

“Roads are for cars not bikes.”
“Go ride your bike in a park where you’re supposed to be.”
“Why do you ride on 2nd street when there’s a side walk there?”
“You shouldn’t ride that early in the day. It’s too dark.”
“You shouldn’t ride at night. It’s too dark.”
“You shouldn’t ride in the day. It’s too hot.”
“You shouldn’t ride around Mission Trails. There are too many illegals crossing.”

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So back to our thought provoking conversations…

The following was sent via Facebook private message (I won’t disclose her name)

“Myssie, I saw all you did and you inspired me to get up and do something good, too. I want to become healthy. I’m tired of being fat and not being able to play with my kids. I want to live a long healthy life but what’s the point if I’m supposed to sit here and accept that most likely I’m going to get hit and killed by a drunk driver way before a heart attack has the time to get me?”

What am I supposed to say? What’s the right thing to say?

I want to encourage people to be healthy and have fun doing it and do good for others and continue to push the healthy wave to others…

But what if I encourage someone to go out there and their life is taken away?

What if mine is taken away?

Since the age of six, I’ve had a recurring nightmare about the way I die. Those who are very close to me have heard the story several times. Even my husband knows how serious I am about this dream and will never drive down Hobbs Drive because of it… but I ride by it on my 5am ride. It is by far the biggest fear I have.

I am not going to pretend I have the answer to it all. I’ve even questioned my own sudden desire to go back to running marathons and leaving cycling. I won’t lie and say I’m not scared. But I also cannot, after all I have learned about overcoming fear and challenges these last few years, be bullied by fear to abandon the sport of cycling… a sport that led me to emotional and physical healing. I cannot let go of it.

What’s the right thing to say?

What’s the right thing to do?

Why is this so complicated now? If that answer just popped up in your head right now… do you believe your own answer?

P.S. The Ghost Ride planned for John Zess on Saturday morning at 7:00a.m. has been postponed due to expected thunderstorms on Saturday morning. Please find more details on the rescheduling of the ride on John’s facebook page, Bicycle World’s FB page or Lone Star Pacesetter’s FB page.

More media links on the latest regarding John Zess: http://www.valleycentral.com/news/story.aspx?id=1095044#.VBJtjvldV8F

We can not let fear deter us from doing the things we love. Cycling is a rather safe activity to partake here in the RGV as hundreds of cyclists were out and about yesterday and every day without incident. Unfortunately, we do have a *BIG* problem with drinking and driving in the area, and this is what is causing the majority, if not all, of the fatalities. I am a big believer that bicycles belong on the road. However, I am also realistic and practical when it comes to finding a solution to a complex problem. That is why we are advocating hard to have a dedicated, separated, region-wide bicycle trail. I am hopeful that this can happen in the next couple of years. ~ Ramon Hermida

The lost life of a cyclist – Eddie Arguelles

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 22, 2014 by runmyssierun

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Eddie Arguelles 11-19-1975---4-17-2014

Eddie Arguelles 11-19-1975—4-17-2014

It was June 25th, 2013, at about 4:45 in the morning in a dark parking lot on the corner of Jackson Rd and Sprague in Edinburg that I had my first real welcoming to the 5am Wake Up Riders. I had been riding my bike for just a few months prior to that but this was the morning when I had announced to the group that I would be riding up the mountains of Nevada 5,000 feet as a challenge to raise money and awareness for cancer in my mother’s memory.

“Do you have the course and elevation?” one of the riders asked.

“Oh ya sure! Here, it’s on my phone.” I replied and showed them with pride the steep incline and decline on a photo in my phone.

I swear each of them took a step back and gave me the now coined “look”. I knew they thought I was crazy but they NEVER told me that I couldn’t do it nor insinuated that it was impossible with my background (or lack of) or in this timeframe that I had. This group was unique.

Now, not to take away from the other cycling groups around town because there are lots… but the other groups who also had experienced, competitive cyclists never really greeted me with welcomed camaraderie. In fact, I witnessed quite a few noses stuck up in the air when I came around their group rides. Regardless, I always smiled to them when I wasn’t scared to death.

The 5am’ers never left my side. When it got to the point when I needed to reach 60, 70, 80 mile rides… they were always there for me right alongside me regardless of what ever they were personally training for. Tuesdays and Thursdays were for either recovery rides or sprinting intervals and weekend rides were for long distances.

And it was the Tues/Thurs rides that I loved the most… because I knew that fellow coffee addict Eddie would be there and we’d share some coffee and chit chat and laughs afterwards… or during the ride. Now, I’ve NEVER been a morning person. Everyone who knows me KNOWS that… and I’m basically a useless zombie without coffee so when I discovered that there was another cyclist that understood my situation… I knew it was true friendship!!! 🙂

So by August 20, I had already become coffee buddies with Eddie. I hadn’t had a lot of sleep the night before and was a complete zombie. I just honestly was NOT in the mood to be out riding… but I did it. Before every ride, the gang always asks each other what ride we are all doing so that we can partner up and ride in groups. Some of us, depending on training and events, need longer faster rides, some of us need shorter slower rides and some of us just need the fastest point between “A” and coffee. Eddie and I were in that last group.

This is what was posted on August 20th:

 

"Which ride are you doing? The air port? The long ride? Or the short ride?" I respond "I'm riding to Starbucks" click click — at 5AM Wake-Up Ride.

“Which ride are you doing? The air port? The long ride? Or the short ride?” I respond “I’m riding to Starbucks” click click — at 5AM Wake-Up Ride.

That morning I was so out of it that I forgot my ATM card and Eddie actually bought me my coffee.

We took our time and sipped our coffee in bliss and because of that, it ended up being Eddie and I by ourselves riding back. We returned going North on 10th from Starbucks and turning right on Sprague instead of continuing North to 107 and looping to Jackson because we both needed to get back in time to take the kiddos to school. I’ll never forget that conversation we had in the darkness of Sprague Street.

“So what’s the deal with Billy? Is he seeing that friend of yours? Are they dating?” he asked.

“Yes! And it kind of caught me a little off guard, too!” I replied. *We were always playing cupid.

“How so?” he asked.

“Well, because I had been trying to set up Wally with a friend of mine that I was running with, Laura, but she had just reconnected with an ex-boyfriend, and then I tried to set him up with Alex but then out of the blue.. here comes Billy!!” and during my conversation I had lifted up my arms because I tend to talk with my hands and he started laughing hysterically.

“You just lifted your hands from the handle bars!!!!” he exclaimed with pride!!!

“OMG I did!! Wow!”

“Do it again!!!” he egged me on and let go of his handle bars clapping.

I tried unsuccessfully.

“Well I’m glad that Billy is happy. But what about Wally now?” he said.

“I don’t know. My poor mijito. He’s such a good kid.” I replied.

He let out a little giggle and said, “Wally can be an *** sometimes but when he loves, he loves hard. Who ever the next girl is, he’s going to fall hard for her.”

It was at that moment that I realized we shared a trait that extended beyond coffee and beyond bikes. We shared an extremely protective nature of our friends. We were both mother hens and he saw exactly the same thing that I saw with our dear cycling guru, Wally.

Last Thursday, I sat with Eddie at Starbucks after our ride and beamed with pride as I was able to share with him an instagram photo of two bikes together in the park.

“No way!!!!” He screamed and smiled at the same time. “That’s Wally’s bike! Who’s the other?”

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I coyly showed him the bike owners photo… and sat back for his reaction.

“Dude! You need to set the rest of these kids up now!” he said in a tone that contained approval, disbelief and giggles all at the same time.

On Thursday, April 17th, I could not wait for coffee and chit chat with Eddie as the new couple told me they “made it official” and shared with me a photo of themselves together. I had it ready to show Eddie because he was right. Wally really did fall hard for her. I think she’s the one for him.

Eddie Arguelles was my coffee buddy, my long ride comedian, my chisme comadre. I would not have made my training for my century ride without him always by my side. He taught me how to change gears correctly, how to master the starbucks order and how to pucker for selfies. I am overcome with grief. God be with Monette Escaname-Arguelles and their family. Please know that we all loved him so very much.

I attended the arraignment hearing for the two boys that killed Eddie. It was a packed house filled and overflowing into the hallway and parking lot with supporters and fellow cyclists uniting together for a change in our community streets.

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Eddie lost his uncle just a few years ago in the exact same manner… a drunk driver killed his uncle while he was riding his bike. Three people just this month lost their lives on bicycles in Hidalgo County.

The problem that is blatantly in front of all our eyes is that we have a serious driving problem. Distracted driving, texting and driving, drinking and driving, drunk driving, drugged driving… it goes on and on. Our problem is way beyond sharing the road. Our problem is our own self-centered thinking that because of our safe cars that we drive in every day, we think we are invincible and do whatever we please because… well, what we’re doing at that very moment is more important than what ever anyone else is doing… or who anyone else is.

I CAN SAY THIS BECAUSE I AM GUILTY OF FEELING THIS WAY AND TEXTING AND DRIVING OR PUTTING MAKE UP ON WHILE DRIVING OR DRINKING COFFEE AND DRIVING… but I’ve never done drugs and drove and I’ve never had a DUI or DWI… but I’m not like most people. I have had six automobile accidents in my lifetime. Four of them were caused by drunk drivers. None of the accidents were my fault. But I’m not like most people.

As the news of Eddie’s tragic loss flew across all platforms of social media, I was taken aback by G.J. Reyna’s quote:  “There are two types riders, those that have gone down and those that will.” But I’m not like most people. I have not gone down nor do I want or accept that I will be. It is ridiculous that cyclists, or runners (because when I was a single sport athlete, many runners were hit by cars as well), must not only be out of breath because of their tough workouts but they must also accept that at any random time a distracted driver can get away with taking their life. 

On Saturday morning, I admit that I was not able to get back on my bike. I allowed fear to deter me from the joy that cycling gave me that was once shared with Eddie and the cause that I promised my mother I would not break. After Ramon said his traditional riders prayer, I asked the group to do the biggest “selfie” I’ve ever attempted. It was a comical tradition that Eddie had me start. And I was successful.

Eddie always had me do a 5am "selfie". I couldn't break tradition. Especially for him.  This is by far the LARGEST selfie I have ever done!!!

Eddie always had me do a 5am “selfie”. I couldn’t break tradition. Especially for him.
This is by far the LARGEST selfie I have ever done!!!

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I wrapped the arms of a hundred cyclists with bright yellow bands and the newbie TNT cyclists that Eddie looked over each Tuesday and Thursday morning with yellow roses and I rode in the SAG vehicle that followed the group that eventually broke up into various speeds along Jackson Road. The “short loop” was officially renamed “Eddie’s Coffee loop” that day.

I yelled for the first time to my fellow cyclists to make sure that they kept their lines so that crazy distracted speeding drivers wouldn’t take another cyclist friend of mine away from me. I felt guilty for doing that.

The core group of 5am’ers gathered after the ride and reminisced over our good times. And it was during one of these little interviews around the tables at Starbucks that I remembered Eddie sitting at with me. And it was during one of these little interviews around the tables at Starbucks that Mike Padgett said “He died doing what he loved. I hope I die that way, too.”

And THAT was what hit me hardest… the realization that each of these riders around me do something that they love so much that they know each time they mount their bike, it could be the last time. And they do it anyway. They know the risk is sky high and they do it anyway. They know there is little that can be done in the society that we live in today and they do it anyway.

Well, I CANNOT ALLOW THIS TO HAPPEN ANY LONGER! Eddie was just as much a mother hen as I am and I know he’d back me up. But I cannot allow Mike Padgett or any other of my friends or myself to die on a bike without a fight, without a plea for help from my fellow citizens, without begging to please please please make a change.

Put down the cell phone. Don’t drink as much as you do… and if you can’t stop drinking or drugging, call a cab or a friend who is not under the influence and in the morning, please, seek help. 

I beg you, please, learn the laws of our shared roads. Some of those turning lanes that you’ve been using or parking in are actually bike lanes and if your F-350 is blocking a cyclist from using it, you’re forcing them to go into the major traffic lanes and endanger their lives. Please don’t think that your life is more important than theirs. We are all equal.

And the same goes to cyclists. PLEASE follow road rules.

I’m going to end this long rant with the words from fellow 2-wheeled amigos who at this moment seem to have been able to capture the right thoughts with the right words and not place anger and emotion into them.

G.J. Reyna: This is a serious problem. It makes no difference what you ride, 2 Wheels are 2 Wheels! Motorcycles or Bicycles we ALL need to do more! Public Awareness is our only tool to make this happen. We need radio, print, tv and ALL forms of socialmedia. Myssie Cardenas-Barajas is on the right track. Problem is that this will take “everybody” all the time to stay focused and not just one person and not just when we loose and friend or family member. Are YOU really going to wait until it hits home. Keep in mind people, NO ONE is immune to this. Every time you jump on your type of two wheels, make sure your lives are in order because it may be your last ride. In our motorcycle world we have a saying or a creed and it goes “There are two types riders, those that have gone down and those that will.” If you dont believe this then you really have no business riding. These accidents will never ever stop but we can all do our part to make sure these lost lives are not in vain by limiting them through public awareness.

 

Eddie Arguelles

Ileana Garcia-Spitz
April 19, 2014 at 4:12pm

I found a message today by Dan Santella, one of the local Monitor reporters, asking me about Eddie. I saw his request too late but it made me want to sit down and write about Eddie because so many people have only heard a headline or listened or viewed a sound byte. I have known Eddie since I was a freshman in high school. In these 24 years, I have had a few observations.

 

For those that never had the opportunity to meet Eddie Arguelles, the things they should know about this marvelous man:

 

1. Eddie was ridiculous. He made everyone laugh. Often times at his own expense. That was part of his charm. He wanted people to feel good about themselves even it meant being ridiculous. Once he became a father and a step father, this was taken to a whole different level. Whether it meant having his nails painted or getting down on all fours to play with his son, he did it.

2. Eddie was not always an avid sports enthusiast. Matter of fact, for a long while Eddie hated even the suggestion of exercise. PE was definitely not his favorite subject. But when he began riding and became part of the community, the change was astonishing.

3. Eddie collected hobbies unlike anyone I know. AND there was no in between for him. If he was going to do something, he was going to go all in which meant buying all of the necessities and gadgets he could. Surfing, woodworking, biking, computers, cooking, motorcycling…he was all in. And that ridiculous man was good at it all.

4. Eddie was a musician and a writer. Therefore, Eddie loved and lived life with passion. He embraced tragedy and questioned love like only a musician/poet can. He loved music and books in their purest and rawest form: dirty because of the misplaced emotion and rough like the women the music described. Boleros, ballads, heavy metal, his tastes were as eclectic as his hobbies; his reading ranged from Kant to Herman Hesse. It seemed only fitting that he passed the day Gabriel Garcia Marquez died. I imagine them now discussing philosophy, and music over a coffee and a cigar.

5. Eddie was a photographer. He didn’t advertise this as much as he should have but Eddie would take wonderful photos. He had the eye for the unusual and the beautiful. His favorite subject that shadows all of the beautiful images are the images of roadkill that he collected on riding trips.6. Eddie was a philosopher. His love of philosophy was rooted in music because with music he was able to meet and talk to people in a laid back manner, a perfect setting for a philosopher. We had many late night conversations about the existence of God and man’s search for meaning. He read Nietzsche (for awhile there he was a bit too obsessed with him) and Kant and could argue like the greats. His uncle Juan fed his lust for knowledge and understanding but Eddie never let one person be the source for him. Everyone gave Eddie insight. That was why so many people were drawn to him. He listened and engaged.

7. Eddie should have been a professor though the piece of paper really would not have made a difference. Eddie was already a teacher and a professor. He helped everyone he came in contact with. There are generations of people, young and old who can easily tell you about the great lecturer that Eddie had become. That is why there are so many people who light up when you ask them to talk about Eddie Arguelles.

8. Eddie was the greatest cheerleader you could ever ask for in a friend. Eddie was the type of guy who would ride along side you and make sure you could make the next mile then ride ahead just so he could be there for you at the finish line. He wanted everyone to succeed even if he couldn’t. This applies not only to sports but education and community as well.

9. Eddie’s loyalty was legendary. If you messed with anyone Eddie loved, you messed with him. And he took his friendships seriously. There is nothing Eddie would not do for a friend. He loved like only a strong man can. He cared for his friends to the point of being so angry at their self destruction that he would cut them off hoping they would realize their faults. It worked most of the time because to disappoint Eddie was like making your superhero cry. The thought itself demanded reform. And that is how Eddie saved so many from the dark side.

10. Eddie was not perfect. His was a journey to become the man everyone is now talking about. For years he didn’t see how important he was and, honestly, there were a lot of people who didn’t see it either. He used his hobbies as ways to develop himself. With surfing, he developed his love of nature, with woodworking he developed patience and attention to detail, computers taught him to be analytic, music put him in touch with his roots and allowed him to see love even in the sadness of breakups and death, music also made him a romantic and gave him the confidence to sing in front of a crowd, philosophy honed his intellect and developed his thirst for knowledge, motorcycles fed his lust for living on the edge then, when he took to cruising, he learned art of zen; bicycling gave Eddie more than a philosophy, it gave Eddie desire, it fed his competitive spirit, it gave him a community and a family, and finally, it taught him that with his mind he could surpass his pain and finish the distance.

 

But when he met Monette and gained a Skylar as his step daughter then when they had his son, his life became complete. He always wanted to be the type of father who would always be there for his kids, who would love them so completely that they would never want for anything. And he wanted to love someone with all of his soul, someone who was his intellectual and spiritual equal not his arm candy or someone he felt obligated to be with. Eddie was the father and the husband that he wanted to be and he did both more passionately and perfectly than even he could imagine.

"Which ride are you doing? The air port? The long ride? Or the short ride?" I respond "I'm riding to Starbucks" click click — at 5AM Wake-Up Ride.

“Which ride are you doing? The air port? The long ride? Or the short ride?” I respond “I’m riding to Starbucks” click click — at 5AM Wake-Up Ride.

1926883_596010910483122_1955813342_n10174963_10154060967200343_2681726673903820913_n 10294327_10154060970835343_4769783416833850118_n 944492_481815171902697_476719757_n 1016351_483062295111318_663712601_n 1002152_482842738466607_409474157_n 1383035_526778127406401_1764034454_n 431332_250326618384888_1650446417_n 1167193_495924930491721_374562420_o10001431_10202753531872922_545674321_n 338872_10150328499539088_1366481205_o 616718_277965098982871_623581245_o 132508_310855532366634_670392896_o 943675_10103108519898080_1427957349_n 1451324_10153527156685343_937927414_n 1486764_10153581293630343_82076008_n 1450311_10153581298545343_1781902435_n 10014485_610225525728327_1619374293_o 10256590_10154061683390343_5831516871921327934_a

And here are the media updates:

http://www.themonitor.com/news/local/charged-after-edinburg-cyclist-killed-in-apparent-drunken-wreck/article_1a4ded6c-c75a-11e3-ade1-001a4bcf6878.html

http://www.krgv.com/news/suspects-await-charges-in-cyclist-s-death

http://www.krgv.com/news/friends-and-family-remember-cyclist-who-was-killed/

http://www.krgv.com/videos/funeral-held-for-bicyclist-struck-in-hit-and-run/

(Texas Monthly used my instagram photo for this!) http://www.texasmonthly.com/daily-post/horrific-cycling-hit-and-run-valley#.U1bHxjAJHLs.facebook

 

 

 

Eddie Arguelles

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 19, 2014 by runmyssierun

There is a serious WRONG in our community. It will either become more acceptable from us and get worse OR our community will rise up and do something about it and minimize it. It’s one or the other. By staying silent and oblivious to the issue makes you part of the problem. Ignorance is no excuse. Our community’s driving behaviors MUST change. Eddie was the biggest cycling safety advocate I knew. But all of his skills and experience was no match for an intoxicated driver. In fact… None of us are a match for an intoxicated driver. Especially if that intoxicated driver is willing to hide the life he took.

Yesterday, I awoke at about 2:30a.m. and could not go back to sleep. I figured I would go a little early to my Thursday morning ride with the 5am Wake Up Riders. I live in McAllen and because I usually have to take the boys to school in the mornings, I take my car with my bike on the rack to the Starbucks in Edinburg (one town away) so that I can return from the ride in time for getting the boys dressed, fed and to school. Lots of the other members ride their bikes to the launch site either because they love to ride and any excuse is good enough, we all live so close by, it’s an easy commute or its a great way to add some more mileage to the morning route.

I arrived at Starbucks at about 4:10 and stayed in the parking lot until the rest of the riders came in.  But I had this ugly feeling. I got out of my car and saw a police car zoom by and went South on Jackson… a couple minutes later.. two more come from another area and go South on 10th… that’s when I knew something awful had happened. But I didn’t know what it was… yet.

The group gathered up right at 5:00 a.m. It was a good sized group, enough for three different groups of speeds and distances. Ramon led us in our safety and grateful prayer and the only thing I remember of it was when he said to keep Eddie Arguelles in our prayers as he was in an accident that morning but didn’t have details.

My head popped up. I knew then something awful had happened to my friend.

Ramon, the fearless leader of the 5am’ers is the type that is super calm, poised and held together in any type of stressful situation so even though he was unusually quiet… he led us all on the ride. But still something told me that he was just as worried as I was.

As usual… I took my place at the back of the pack to check out who was the last rider and who would need that extra help along the way… but something was still telling me that something wasn’t right. At the first light along the course, I had to do anything I could to speed us up and find out what happened to Eddie.

click click

I jumped up to the lead of the group and pulled so that I could increase the pace and speed us up. That worked for a little while but Mel sprinted up to me and told me to slow down the pace because a rider in the back couldn’t keep up. I understood and slowed down the pace… but I was aching so badly to just get back quick.

Once we got to 10th street, most of the gang understands that I do my sprint intervals so I took that opportunity and went as fast as I could. I felt Ronnie behind me so I slowed down a bit to make it seem like this was normal practice and I really wasn’t freaking out… but I was.

When everyone saw that I was sprinting, everyone else followed. We got back to Starbucks pretty fast and gathered around the outside tables and that’s when I saw it…

1496700_614965521920994_1079276533259338023_n (1)

Eddie P had posted the above picture with this caption: Eddie Arguelles was hit by a car. Not good cant find him. Pd is out looking for eddie a

What??? What did he mean “can’t find him”???? If he was hit, and his bike was there, why wasn’t he there?

Deep down, I knew what had happened… but I couldn’t think that. Nahhhh. That couldn’t happen.

“Maybe he got hit and is disoriented and walking around.”

“Maybe the person who hit him took him to the hospital.”

“Call the hospitals. Lets find out where he’s at.”

“Call the police departments.”

I called my news media friends to see if anything had come over the wire. Everyone was on alert. E-V-E-R-Y-O-N-E

I left my cyclists friends that morning with a feeling that was eerily dark. Something very very evil had just happened.

I cannot recount here what happened to Eddie. It is much too disgusting for my heart to bear. I will post links to what the media is announcing though.

Here are a few:

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” lang=”en”><p>RT <a href=”https://twitter.com/KRGV_Shelley”>@KRGV_Shelley</a&gt;: Edinburg PD investigating fatal hit-and-run w/bicyclist. 2 in custody, caught dumping body. <a href=”http://t.co/8NWn3qvUut”>pic.twitter.com/8NWn3qvUut</a&gt; <a href=”https://twitter.com/search?q=%23RGV&amp;src=hash”>#RGV</a></p>&mdash; KRGV CHANNEL 5 NEWS (@krgv) <a href=”https://twitter.com/krgv/statuses/456784399799812099″>April 17, 2014</a></blockquote>
<script async src=”//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>

http://www.krgv.com/news/edinburg-police-investigating-hit-and-run

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” lang=”en”><p>RT <a href=”https://twitter.com/KRGV_Shelley”>@KRGV_Shelley</a&gt;: <a href=”https://twitter.com/search?q=%23Edinburg&amp;src=hash”>#Edinburg</a&gt; PD ID victim of fatal hit &amp; run as 38-year-old <a href=”https://twitter.com/search?q=%23cyclist&amp;src=hash”>#cyclist</a&gt; Eduardo Aguelles. <a href=”http://t.co/VCSZcsCcvW”>pic.twitter.com/VCSZcsCcvW</a></p>&mdash; KRGV CHANNEL 5 NEWS (@krgv) <a href=”https://twitter.com/krgv/statuses/456791174020624384″>April 17, 2014</a></blockquote>
<script async src=”//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” lang=”en”><p>RT <a href=”https://twitter.com/krgv_erica”>@krgv_erica</a&gt;: Nelson Cantu (in black) &amp; Emilio Gomez (in blue) are charged in the death of the cyclist, Eddie… <a href=”http://t.co/kk2fKOwZsb”>http://t.co/kk2fKOwZsb</a&gt; <a href=”https://twitter.com/search?q=%23RGV&amp;src=hash”>#RGV</a></p>&mdash; KRGV CHANNEL 5 NEWS (@krgv) <a href=”https://twitter.com/krgv/statuses/457246039586910208″>April 18, 2014</a></blockquote>
<script async src=”//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” lang=”en”><p>Two charged in connection with death of <a href=”https://twitter.com/search?q=%23Edinburg&amp;src=hash”>#Edinburg</a&gt; <a href=”https://twitter.com/search?q=%23cyclist&amp;src=hash”>#cyclist</a&gt;, allegedly went to eat after accident <a href=”https://twitter.com/search?q=%23RGV&amp;src=hash”>#RGV</a&gt; Link: <a href=”http://t.co/EsG7hJvUGr”>http://t.co/EsG7hJvUGr</a></p>&mdash; KRGV CHANNEL 5 NEWS (@krgv) <a href=”https://twitter.com/krgv/statuses/457246423130865664″>April 18, 2014</a></blockquote>
<script async src=”//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js” charset=”utf-8″></script>

EDITORIAL: Valley cyclists fatally hit – The Monitor: News.

http://m.themonitor.com/news/local/friends-lament-hit-and-run-that-killed-rd-bicyclist-in/article_72721dd6-c635-11e3-99e6-0017a43b2370.html?mode=jqm

What I WILL do is promise to keep posting the media coverage for my online cycling and triathlon community to witness, swallow and light that fire that DOES SOMETHING ABOUT THIS OUTRAGEOUS SENSELESS COLD ACT.

What I WILL do is tell the story of how Eddie helped me train for the second point of my triple crown without ever riding a road bike before in my life. I will also tell how Eddie helped my hometown create box corners for cyclists and safer designated bike routes all over town and the county. I will also SHOW how Eddie was a great friend and how we always had coffee together after every ride and sometimes even during a ride. I will also tell how Eddie was one of the most experienced cyclists in South Texas, how he was one of the biggest safety advocates in the region regarding cycling, how he loved to bar-b-que, was a hilarious comedian, a brilliant IT nerd, and best of all… a great family man of high morals and ethic.

But that’ll be on my next post. I am way too emotional for that at this moment.

A fellow cyclist, Pete Davila (who gave me permission to repost), posted the following:

Can’t stop thinking about our fellow cyclist who passed away yesterday. Can’t stop thinking of him. your on my constant thoughts. 

I am a cyclist. I get on my bike and go for short rides and long rides out of the Valley and back solo unsupported.. 
” I love distance cycling”.. I do it because it is what I do for exercise, recreation and meditation. like the freedom. I like the rythym. I love everything about it. It’s my Passion… and I’m not the only one who feels the same as I do.. We enjoy everything about it except one thing:
Reckless Motorists.

So ?? what is it about a guy, or gal, on their bike that causes so much aggravation to people who drive cars? Is it because we look different? I wear a helmet. I don’t have a couple of thousand pounds of a metal shell protecting me. I wear tight shorts with padding in the seat. Why? Because it make the activity more comfortable and it’s hard enough to fight through the wind without baggy shorts flapping around. I wear gloves. Ever taken a fall at 20 miles an hour? The first thing that happens is you put your hand out to cushion the impact. Know how long it takes for road rash to heal on the palm of your hand? A long time. And it hurts. I wear sunglasses just like you. You wear them to keep the sun out of your eyes and to look cool. I wear them to keep the sun out of my eyes, to look cool and to keep debris out of my eyes.

The problem is, if I’m not perfect I pay for it with my life. If you aren’t perfect, I pay for it with my life. It doesn’t matter if you are right or I am wrong, or I am right and you are wrong, when it comes to sharing the road, the cyclist always, always, always loses. Always.

And for those drivers who drive by at a reasonable speed and distance, who give a little wave and maybe a little knowing smile: It does not go unappreciated or unnoticed.

“THANK YOU,” Believe me, we see and notice everything!!..

 

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