DENVER (CBS4)– It is next to impossible to imagine the pain of a young child losing their mother. It’s even more difficult to comprehend the heartache of two little boys who no longer have their mom.
“That’s the hardest part… her children,” Peggy Boardman, mother of Alexis Bounds, said tearfully. “It’s so hard for her 4-year-old. He just wants to talk to his mama one more time. It’s just so hard for him to understand.”
Alexis Bounds, 37, was riding her bike near Marion Street Parkway and Bayaud Avenue in July when a dump truck driver failed to yield. The truck collided with Bounds, killing the wife and mother of two. The case shocked many in Denver, especially the cycling community.
“It could’ve been my wife. It could’ve been my wife carrying my kids,” David Chen, member of the Denver Bicycle Lobby, told CBS4’s Kelly Werthmann.
Chen often rides his bike past the “ghost bike” memorial for Bounds near the intersection of the crash. It’s a reminder, Chen said, not only of the tragedy but also why bicyclists need more protection.
“Protected bike lanes are critical because paint is not protection,” he said.
In fact, a painted lane offered zero safety for Chen on a ride not long ago.
“I was hit by a truck in February of this year,” Chen said.
“Were you badly hurt?” Werthmann asked.
“It was not as bad,” he replied. “Definitely a shock.”
Chen is pleased the city will install protected bike lanes along Marion Street Parkway in 2020. He’s hopeful it’s just the beginning of safe solutions for bicycle lanes all across Denver.
“We need not just protected bike lanes, but a protected network,” he explained.
A mission he and other cyclists are on to ensure no other family – no small child – has to suffer the unimaginable pain.
“I want to do my part to prevent this from happening again,” Chen said.
The driver who hit Bounds, 51-year-old David Anton, pled guilty Friday morning to careless driving resulting in death. In a plea deal, he will avoid jail time as long as he completes 200 hours of community service. His sentencing is set for late January 2020.