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Motorcylist escorting motorcyclist's ashes killed in crash

Motorcyclists are vulnerable when on the road. Other drivers in motor vehicles may not see the much smaller bikes and the lack of protection around the motorcyclists often means serious injuries or death when a crash occurs.

A recent Iowa motorcycle accident has odd ties to Manassas, Virginia. In mid-September, a 69-year-old man died from head injuries he suffered while escorting the remains of six veterans for burial in Arlington Cemetery.

The man was instrumental in creating and operating Missing In America Project in Nebraska. This organization arranges military burials for the unclaimed remains of veterans. In addition, they try to find family members of the veterans.

The man's remains were being escorted to Omaha, Nebraska, from western Iowa by 125 motorcyclists. His remains had been transported from Virginia to western Iowa by his brother-in-law. During the final leg of the journey, a driver changed lanes and struck several motorcyclists. Three riders were injured and one, age 38, was killed. One of the injured was the deceased's wife.

The accident is still under investigation and there is no word on whether the 81-year-old driver of the vehicle will face any charges. A friend of both men who died said, "It was very tragic, and we're all praying for the families."

The man that died in Iowa didn't know the man who died in Virginia. That really affected the widow of the older man who died. She said, "It's just surreal. It's been surreal since [her husband]'s been gone. . . . We had wanted to celebrate [her husband]'s life yesterday, but you really can't because someone has lost theirs."

The families of the men who died may wish to learn more about wrongful death lawsuits. Depending on who was at fault in the accidents, the family members may have a claim for compensation.

Source: The Des Moines Register, "Crash kills motorcyclist escorting veteran's body, hurt 3," Charly Haley, Sep. 27, 2015

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