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Mountain Biker’s Death Sad and Sobering

Fountain Hills, McDowell Meltdown, 2011, MBAA

This is what mountain biking should look like ...

There’s been a second fatality at McDowell Mountain Regional Park. Read more in this Wandering Justin post. March 26, 2012

UPDATED

Sometimes, I really hate mountain biking. Like when I learned earlier this week that a fellow mountain biker died on one of my favorite trails.

The local media has not seen fit to cover the death of Ron Cadiente, 61: I heard about it on Facebook and MTBR.com. Details are sketchy. All I know is that he was a properly equipped veteran rider. It’s unclear if his death was caused by a crash, or if his crash was caused by cardiac arrest while on the Long Loop of the Competitive Track at McDowell Mountain Regional Park.

These are the moments that suck the energy out of mountain biking. I can’t count the number of times I’ve ridden this trail. And now someone lost a life on it.

This is a shadow that follows me every time I ride. I hate admitting this, but it’s as honest as I can be. My number-one task on every ride is … come home in one piece. I often roll into a stretch of trail, give my brakes a quick tap – knowing full well I could go faster and do it better. But I know that quick feathering of my brake levers makes it more likely that I’ll walk back in my door.

The same unease hits me when my wife rides. I just want her to come back happy and safe.

How and why do we ride like this? Hell, how do we live like this, while the potential of changing our lives for the worse chases us every mile of the way?

I can’t explain it fully. It’s part of mountain biking, and it’s part of living. Risk is everywhere. Eliminate that risk, and I guess you eliminate everything that’s interesting in life.

Of course, that doesn’t mean much to Ron’s family. To them, I can only say this: I wish it hadn’t happened, and it’s not supposed to be like this.

To those of us who still ride: Come home safe. For yourself, and for all those who care for you.

UPDATE (Feb. 14)

A member of the MTBR forum posted information about services for Ron, which he found on the Bunker Mortuary website. And condolences to his daughter Brooke and son Brett, who posted very kind messages thanking the mountain bike community for its support. It’s impossible to not think really well of Ron and those who survive him when you see the goodness and dignity in their words.

Name: Ronald Roy Cadiente

Date: April 15th, 1950 – February 11th, 2012

Obituary:
Cadiente, Ronald, 61, died in a mountain bike accident February 11, 2012. He is survived by his wife Pamela, children Garron (Sharon) Cadiente, Brett Cadiente, Maren (Jimmy) Bloomer, Brooke Cadiente, Paige (Sterling) Stahle, 13 grandchildren and brothers Herb Davis, Carlos Cadiente and Rick Cadiente. A kind and loving husband, father and grandfather he was devoted to his family whom he loved unconditionally and enjoyed being involved their lives. He was passionate about the work he did as a software salesman and valued the relationships he made. He was honest, hardworking, sincere, and compassionate. Ron was a baseball coach, avid hiker, mountain biker, University of Arizona graduate and family man who was as generous in his relationships as he was genuine. As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he served a mission in southern California and served in a variety of church leadership positions, including Bishop, all of which he loved. He was an influence for good in every aspect of his life. He is missed and loved by many, especially his family. Viewing is February 16th from 6-8 PM at Bunker’s Garden Chapel, 33 North Centennial Way, Mesa AZ 85201. Funeral is February 17th, 11 AM with viewing one hour prior at the LDS Church, 1430 N Grand Street, Mesa AZ 85201.

Visitations:
6:00PM to 8:00PM on Thursday, February 16th, 2012 at Bunker’s Garden Chapel
10:00AM to 10:45AM on Friday, February 17th, 2012 at LDS Lehi Stake Center

Services:
11:00AM at LDS Lehi Stake Center on Friday, February 17th, 2012

2 thoughts on “Mountain Biker’s Death Sad and Sobering

  1. TERRY JONES

    I ARRIVED AT THE PARK THE SAME TIME AS EMERGENCY CREWS WERE RUSHING IN TO THE TRAIL. IT WAS UNUSUALLY WARM FOR A FEB. DAY AROUND 80 DEG. I THOUGHT TO MYSELF COMING FROM CAVE CREEK WHERE IT’S BEEN MAYBE 70 DEG. AT THE PEAK OF THE DAY.
    I THOUGHT THE FAMILY MIGHT WANT TO KNOW THIS IN CASE IT HAD ANY ROLE IN THIS TRAGIC ACCIDENT. I FELT PRETTY WARM ON MY RIDE SOON THEREAFTER. IT’S NOT THE TEMP. IT’S THE INTENSE SUN COMBINED WITH WIND AND AN INCREASE TEMP. COMBINING TO ACCELERATE VITAL SIGNS ON A PRETTY CHALLENGING TRACK.

    I AM TRULY SORRY A FELLOW MATURE RIDER IS GONE… MAYBE AN ORGANIZED RIDE IN HIS HONER AT THE MCDOWELL PARK SHOULD BE PLANED WITH DONATIONS
    GOING TO THE FAMILY. BEST WISHES!

  2. WanderingJustin

    I like your organized ride idea. Judging from their posts on the MTBR thread, Ron leaves an excellent family with our community.

    Thanks for dropping by, Terry. Ride safe out there!

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