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Hundreds of cyclists ride to honor father of 10 who died in hit-and-run crash

Bright Lights for Charlie
Posted at 9:11 AM, Sep 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-17 10:12:01-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — More than 500 people came with their bikes in hand Saturday morning at Longview Lake Beach to honor a late cyclist, teacher and father of 10, Charlie Criniere, who died last month in a hit-and-run crash in Kansas City, Missouri.

Organizers called the ride “Bright Lights for Charlie,” an opportunity to remember Criniere's memory, while raising money for family.

The cyclists gathered at Longview Lake Beach to start the ride, peddling from between 10 to 100 miles. Riders rode past Criniere's memorial and some, including Criniere's pastor, took the 10 mile ride around the lake 10 times to honor his 10 children.

"You feel helpless, you feel hopeless that there's so much pain and uncertainty involved, and this is a way to do something for the family, and this is a way to help us heal as well," said J.C. Van Deventer, who organized the event.

The event also aimed to bring awareness to drivers to look out for people riding their bikes.

"It's an amazing cycling community, Kansas City in itself is phenomenal, and this absolutely shows that we can have hundreds upon hundreds of people show up," Deventer said.

Criniere died after being hit while riding his bike near Longview Road and View High Road. The driver fled the scene.

A 27-year-old woman from Wisconsin, Kyrie Fields, has been arrested and charged in the crash.

While there was no registration fee, those in attendance were able to make donations for Criniere's family.