The loss of two great cyclists; Peter Root and Mary Thompson
Replies: 18 - Last Post: Feb 25, 2013 2:40 PM Last Post By: PhilipD
Feb 15, 2013 5:23 PM
The loss of two great cyclists; Peter Root and Mary ThompsonIt's with a saddened heart that I write to the forum. Many of you may have known Pete and Mary (www.twoonfourwheels.com) or had contact with them through this forum. They were a couple on tour around the world by bike. Tragically they were both killed by a truck in Thailand on Wednesday doing what they loved. If you ever had the fortune to meet these two lovely people on the road you would have been taken back by Pete's generosity, his enthusiasm on the banjo and touched by Mary's gentle nature, sense of humor and beautiful smile.
I know that cycling around the world changed my life as I know it does for all those brave enough to venture out there. It is always sad to hear of those tragically killed on tours but also beautiful to see how we inspire each other to live in the awe and rapture of life as we do living on the road and being touched by the people we meet. Pete and Mary were two of these people.
In case you don't know them personally, Pete recently put together this video cycling through "The Stans" which was shortlisted for the Filmed by Bike Festival. You can view it on Vimeo here: http://vimeo.com/56917615. I would ask as a tribute you share this video with anyone you think may need inspiration or who you feel may be touched by it. I know that they and their families would have liked this idea.
Pete and Mary, you will be sorely missed by all the cycling community.
Tailwinds to you all,
Feb 15, 2013 11:17 PM
Feb 16, 2013 1:30 AM
Feb 16, 2013 2:37 AM
3Terrible and tragic news. What was their TT user name(s)?
I didn't know them - its the first time I've seen that website - but the vimeo video is very good quality, one of the best of that kind of travelogue I've seen.
Do you have any idea of the circumstances of the accident? I was in Thailand recently, and it struck me as one of the safer places to ride in Asia (apart from around Bangkok). Their website indicates that they were at the Cambodian border. When I crossed there about 10 years ago I found it quite dangerous due to the sudden change in road conditions and the swap over to driving on the left as you enter Thailand.
Feb 17, 2013 4:10 AM
Feb 17, 2013 10:24 AM
5Very sad. I was in Thailand a few years ago, 2 weeks for work and then a week off where I took the train to get around. I went to Khao Yai park in the middle of the country and couldn't get in because I didn't have a car, so I hitch hiked the last few km. I got thrown in the back of a pickup and the drivers were absolutely insane, flying around corners and barely keeping the thing on the road. At least I would have been thrown from the vehicle if it crashed. Then in the park I rented a bike and kept to the quiet backroads looking for elephants. I always try to stick to quiet backroads or trails as much as possible, it reduces the human error aspect and shifts it back onto me.
Feb 18, 2013 5:08 AM
Feb 18, 2013 10:44 AM
7I was 34 when my wife at the time and I bicycled through Thailand as part of a 45,000 kilometer 7 year ride around the planet that changed my life. I happen to live here in Thailand now, and would in all honesty say that it ranks as one of the worst places in the world to ride a bicycle due to the insane driving, lack of bicycles and any kind of regard for bicyclists or pedestrians. My heart goes out to them and their families, and may they rest in peace.
Feb 18, 2013 8:27 PM
8so young so sad!
I don't understand so many people (Bangkok post forum) saying that cycling in thailand is asking for trouble!
The only time i don't feel safe in thailand is on a Mini Van, on a motorbike or even walking the Bangkok street.
So what? do we have to travel on a Big car to feel safe?
I just watch their video, It's fantastic.
Feb 18, 2013 9:39 PM
I must disagree with that! I am cycling in Thailand just now, presently in Pai. Mostly I find Thai drivers give me good room when they overtake and otherwise.
On this trip I have seen quite a few Chinese registered cars, both in Thai a and Lao, and I find them more dangerous then the Thais themselves.
Very sad to hear of these deaths!
Feb 19, 2013 12:39 AM
10What to say?!
Some hommage-ish article in a Dutch paper.
Feb 19, 2013 1:50 AM
11So sad. I, also, had a friend who was killed while riding a bicycle in Hua Hin, Thailand. He was waiting at a traffic light when a car careened across the intersection and struck him, killing him instantly. I would also say that Thailand is a poor choice for cycling due to the crazy drivers. My sympathies to the families of these travelers.
Feb 19, 2013 7:18 AM
12I'm very sorry to hear this news. Cycling is a somewhat risky way to travel. We will always be the ones to come off worse in an accident with a vehicle. Its a fact of life that we choose to live with. All we can do if we take this risk is to minimise the risks as best we can.
btw feeling safe is not the same as being safe. People always talk about feeling safe as if that was the point. FEeling safe is "nice" but you could be dead the next minute or robbed or whatever. Being safe is not having any of those things happens to you. And that's regardless of how you feel.
Feb 21, 2013 11:35 AM
13I know my folks will not be able to avoid worrying when I embark on a similar trip. I would like to tell them "that if I spend my final day consumed in what I love, feeling my most alive that they need not have worried". But they will..that's life!
'A safe life' is really after the event of life itself. A varying experience. We call that something else and avoid the oxymoron.
I have gathered so much inspiration from the site created by Peter and Mary i,m sure they would like it to continue to inspire and be testament to what a full life they were living.
Feel the fear and do it anyway....
My deepest condolences to all their friends and Family.
Feb 22, 2013 1:58 AM
14I feel very sorry about them. At least they were doing what they wanted to do.
For me Thailand was a very safe country to cycle. There are some stupid drivers but specially in the north they are usually giving a lot of space. Much better than in Cambodia or China! I even cycled in Bangkok. It's not so nice there and a bit scary, only for advanced drivers...
Accidents happen and it's true that the Thais are not that used to bicycles. BUT: There are thousands of cycle touring people in Thailand every year.
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