Police seeking witnesses to serious bike wreck near N Seattle Community College

A 32 year-old man has life-threatening injuries after an incident while biking on College Way N near North Seattle Community College Thursday afternoon.

Police do not yet know what happened and are hoping a witness will come forward. They do not believe any other vehicles were involved.

From SPD:

On February 23rd at approximately 3:28 p.m. officers responded to a report of a bicyclist down in the 9600 block of College Way North.  Preliminary investigation indicates that a 32-year-old male was riding his bicycle northbound in the 9600 block of College Way North when, for reasons yet to be determined, he crashed causing substantial injury to his person.  No other vehicles appear to be involved.

SFD medics responded to the scene and transported the male bicyclist to Harborview Medical Center with life-threatening injuries.   

Traffic Collision Investigation Squad detectives responded to the scene and continue to actively investigate.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call 911 or Seattle Police and refer to this event.  Anonymous tips are welcome.

UPDATE 2/24 9:53 am: Many people have sent updates and well wishes in the comments below. I highly suggest reading them. Also, long-time SBB commenter Leif says Christian is his housemate. He is doing better, but was still unconscious as of this morning.

UPDATE 2/27: Leif has another update on Christian’s recovery and what may have caused the wreck:

Couple updates. First, Christian is still unconscious (at least he hasn’t opened his eyes) but yesterday when a bunch of us were there he did respond to the nurses request for a thumbs up with a very enthusiastic, purposeful thumb in the air. This was the first time he had responded in a way that we were sure was actually him and not just a slight movement. It was very exciting and a good sign that he is moving in the right direction.

In terms of the accident, after speaking with the responding officer and the EMT student who was the first responder we are pretty confident that this was a freak accident and didn’t involve any other vehicles. Despite what the police report on the blotter suggests there was actually witnesses who saw him go over his handlebars, likely after something broke off his spokes and got caught in the wheels. It certainly doesn’t change the situation, but it is nice to know that nobody caused this and then left the scene.

Thanks to the folks who helped Christian at the time of the accident, especially the EMT student. We are very grateful you were all there.

Meanwhile, his family and friends are asking supporters to send Christian positive healing thoughts/prayers every day at 3:30 p.m.

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74 Responses to Police seeking witnesses to serious bike wreck near N Seattle Community College

  1. Todd says:

    I hope he is ok.

  2. Is there any sand still on the street from the recent snowstorms? Bellevue is still littered with the stuff. Biking to work over here involves dodging fields of tiny ball bearings. Seriously sketchy stuff…

    • Brittany says:

      As far as I know there aren’t a lot of major hazards around the campus. I ride around there pretty frequently. Makes me even more curious and perplexed about what happened.

  3. North Seattle Local says:

    That is almost in front of the North Seattle Precinct Station for SPD, and Seattle cleaned their streets a long time ago after the snow, not to mention the heavy rain we have been having.

    It doesn’t say if he was wearing a helmet or what his injuries were, but it was not a bad weather day in the North End nor rush hour (and that street usually is not impacted by any rush hour anyway, Northgate Way is but that is about 1/4-1/2 mile north).

  4. Jake Rusby says:

    The cyclist is my brother. I am sure he was wearing his helmet since he is from a cycling family. He is doing better, still unconscious at midnight tonight. I will find out more tomorrow.

  5. Marc Eskenazi says:

    Please give Christian and family our best wishes for a speedy recovery!
    -The crew at Facilities Operations, North Seattle Community College

  6. Ryan Packard says:

    Our thoughts are with Christian and his family during this tough time. We all hope he recovers soon.

    NSCC International Programs

  7. Melanie says:

    My thoughts are with Christian. Please let us know how he is.

  8. NSCC community member says:

    Time with Christian is a high point of my day at NSCC. I’m very saddened and concerned to know that Christian is hurt and in the hospital. I’m glad that he has family to support him. Please keep us posted when you are able. Blessed Be that Christian finds his way to what is in his highest good.

  9. Carianya Napoli says:

    My thoughts and prayers are with Christian and his family for a speedy recovery. Your NSCC family is here to support you along the way…

  10. Rosemary Jones says:

    So sorry to hear about Christian’s accident–here’s to a speedy recovery.

  11. Leif says:

    Christian is my housemate. We just visited him again this morning in the ICU. He is stable, but still unconscious (at least partially due to the heavy sedation). They had a pressure sensor on his brain last night, but removed it because the pressure had stabilized. While we were there they took him off assisted breathing and he was doing fine on his own. Apparently when they let the sedation wear off a bit he is responsive and moves about, potentially even responding slightly to verbal commands. It’s unclear how long recovery will be, but we are hopeful. Thanks everyone for the well wishes.

    I’m hoping someone saw what happened and will come forward with information. Christian is an experienced, safe cyclist and he rides that road daily. I actually road part of it with him earlier in the day and while there is some sand/debris in the bike lane it didn’t seem like enough to create a problem. Folks at NSCC please spread the word, hopefully somebody can give us some more details. If not, we’ll just have to wait for Christian to come to and tell us himself.

  12. Bridget Doran says:

    We are all sending healing thoughts and prayers to Christian and his family during this difficult time. We need him back in good health.

  13. Christian's Friends at SEIU1199 Training Fund says:

    We know Christian to be a safe and dedicated cyclist, so are shocked to hear about this accident. Please send our absolute best wishes for his speedy recovery.
    We need him!

  14. Sherry Tuinstra-Rosales says:

    Sending best wishes and prayers to Christian and the family. I’m faculty at NSCC, so I will ask my students if they saw anything.

    It seems suspicious to me that no other vehicles were involved-hit and run?? I wonder why the police didn’t see anything, since the precinct is right there?

    • Nancy Leverton says:

      They were all out on patrol?

    • Chris says:

      Don’t be quick to assume that since Christian wrecked, someone must have hit him. Some of my scariest accidents riding have actually involved equipment failure – a chain snapping, breaking a wheel rim while hopping a curb, etc. I know a roadie who simply hit a crack in the street wrong while accelerating from a stop on a training ride, went over her handles bars, and broke her arm and her bike. If she had hit that crack full speed she would have been in serious trouble.

      Accidents do happen – that what the definition is. Lets hope we find out the cause – and I do hope its not a hit-and-run, we have enough problems! And lets hope for a speedy recovery for Christian.

  15. Nathan Fitzgerald says:

    Christian is a light on campus. He will be in my thoughts and prayers. Hang in there Christian, North needs you.

  16. Mark B says:

    If the police thimk there is no other vehicle involved then they do not think it was a hit and run.

    All the best to Christian, I do not know him but wish him a speedy recovery.

  17. Pennie O'Grady says:

    I feel so bad to hear this. My very best wishes are with everyone close. Thanks to Amy for the alert and Leif and Jake for updates.

  18. Arlette Fellores says:

    I’m so sorry to hear what happened. Christian our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family for your safe recovery. North misses you.

  19. Elise Koncsek says:

    My thoughts are with Christian. Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help. I’m wishing for a quick and easy recovery.

  20. AJ says:

    I am a good friend of Christine’s father and you are ALL in my prayers for a speedy and full healing! So sorry to hear about your accident!

    Love and light,
    AJ

  21. Erica says:

    I met Christian when he organized some food preservation activities with Sustainable Green Lake a few years ago and I participated. I am so sorry to hear that he is injured and hope that he makes a full and speedy recovery.

    Note on the road: I ride to NSCC weekly for a continuing education class and there are several rough spots in the bike lanes in that area, including broken and uplifted pavement, as well as enough sand and gravel that a cyclist could definitely do themselves some injury. The sweepers don’t usually get all the way over into the bike lanes or shoulders, where cyclists tend to be, and often passing cars send any sand/gravel in the main lane over into the bike lane.

  22. Christine Dostal says:

    I am working at Harborview today and I am happy to come by to bring lunch or coffee or anything else the family may need.

  23. Tom Kerns says:

    I’m so sorry to hear this. Prayers and healing thoughts are going out from this house to Christian and his family. -Tom

  24. Nancy Leverton says:

    I saw the bike on the side of the road yesterday when I left at 4:10. There was a police officer on the scene. Of course I had no idea what happened, but was concerned. Christian, friends and family… best thoughts and prayers are sent your way.

  25. Megbikes says:

    So inspirational to see so many people who cherish Christian on here, and read everyone’s well wishes. He really is a light in our community, a friend to everyone who knows him. A group of friends are headed up to North Seattle CC this afternoon to flier and to see if we can track down any witnesses. We’re also still trying to track down his bike to see if there are any clues there. We will update this thread with any new information about the incident. Thanks again for rallying around our beloved Christian and sending your positive thoughts for his recovery.

  26. Trish Root says:

    Christian,
    Your presence at NSCC is already very much missed. So many people are thinking about you and wishing you a quick recovery.

  27. Katherine Morse says:

    Christian,
    May your recovery be quick and complete. We value you greatly at NSCC.
    Katherine

  28. Sean K says:

    I’m so glad to see the support for Christian expressed here. He’s a rare specimen, a strong, spririted guy, good to the bone, and as loyal a friend as you could have – not to mention one of the most experienced cyclists I know. I have no doubt he’ll get through this, but it’s painful to know he’s in a tough place right now. He and his family are in the forefront of my thoughts.

  29. Eddie says:

    Christian is such an awesome guy. I hate to hear news like this. Thoughts and prayers are heading in the way of him and his family. I’m sure they can use the support.

    Anybody that knows him have nothing but awesome things to say.

  30. Linda Stein says:

    I just learned about this terrible accident..so sorry to hear this. Wishing you a
    quick recovery, Christian. Thinking of you and sending healing thoughts your way.

  31. Lydia Minatoya says:

    Christian, at NSCC you are beloved. I send you and your family all my best wishes and prayers.

  32. Susan Gregory says:

    I’m so sorry to hear about and sending my best wishes to Christian for a full and speedy recovery.

  33. Dan Tarker says:

    Christian,

    Get well soon. You’re in our thoughts over here at NSCC.

  34. JJ says:

    I just realized from another comment that I have met Christian. I am sending prayers & love to his family & friends. What a terrible tragedy. So sad.

  35. Sara Frame says:

    Christian is the safest biker I know. He takes proper care of himself and everyone around. He has the most open, caring, giving heart and I am hoping that the light he puts out is energizing his recovery at this very moment. He is amazing and I can’t wait until he is back to his self again. I am guaranteed a smile every time I see him.

  36. Gabriel Grant says:

    Wishing for the best…

  37. Chris says:

    You are in my thoughts, prayers. and meditations Christian. Get well soon. Megan (and family) if you need anything at all, please do not hesitate to let me know.

  38. Christy Nordstrom & Bill Aston says:

    To Christian and family – our healing thoughts go out to you at this time. May you recover quickly!

  39. Tyler Shields says:

    Christian’s friends on Kwajalein have him and his family in our thoughts. We’re all sending our best wishes for a very speedy recovery.

  40. Karen Stuhldreher says:

    Christian–thoughts are with you and your family. You are an invaluable part of our family here at North and we are all pulling for you.
    K

  41. Jan Brooks says:

    Christian — we are all sending healing thoughts your way. We all want you well, soon. The world needs your smile. Megan, if there’s anything I can do, please let me know.

    Jan

  42. Sarah Rusby says:

    Best wishes for a speedy recovery from the California cousin

  43. Janet Hoppe-Leonard says:

    Christian – You are by far one of my favorite people and North and I wish you a strong and speedy recovery – I am sending my most positive thoughts your way!

  44. EMT Student says:

    I was on my way to NSCC EMT school yesterday, and did not see how the accident happened, but I was one of the first to see him after it had just happened. As I was driving, I saw an apparently injured person lying on the ground and several confused and panicked civilians run towards him. I stopped my car instantly, grabbed my EMT kit that I am SO Thankful I had with me, and went to his side. There was a helmet involved, THANK goodness.I did go to the Seattle Police Department and was told the bike malfunctioned. My hopes and Prayers go out to Christian, all of his friends, family, and Co workers. Also, my thanks to SFD Medics for responding so quickly.

  45. Luis Carbajal says:

    I know he’ll be good again ,it sucks what happened to him but we got to have faith and believe that he’ll conquer ,and so he will , our prayers and good thoughts are with you friend , hang in there and come back from were you are. :)

  46. Ralph Jenne says:

    Christian, Best wishes for a complete and quick recovery !

  47. Kat says:

    I’m so sorry to hear about this, please send my regards to Christian for a speedy recovery!

  48. Bridget says:

    I met Christian for the first time just a couple of weeks ago (for food buying coop planning) and felt privilaged to have him there….what a wonderful person….so engaged, community oriented…generous with time and information. He seems to be a wonderful connector between groups and people….Updates are SO appreciated…any support needed will be there for he and the people who do the caregiving (while needed). Count me in! Hopefully recovery will be gentle and fast. If more specifica are given regarding injuries…we can help with visualizations for healing….with all healing thoughs being helpful.

  49. sasha says:

    Christian is amazing and an inspiration to so many students, myself in included. My thoughts and prayers go out to Christian and his family.
    Wishing for a speedy and complete recovery!
    Please continue to keep us updated.

  50. Heidi Stuber says:

    It is a gift to have Christian at NSCC. We are all thinking of him and his family and keeping him in our prayers. May this weekend be full of hope, health and miracles.

    Can’t wait to see you again across the hall buddy!

    Heidi
    Continuing Education

  51. Christine Bae says:

    Soon after Christian started our MUP program, he decided to bike and walk more. He was so happy and said to me in front of Gould Hall, “So, Christine, I sold my car. Now, I walk more, and bike more.” I am hearing his laugh as I am writing here. Christian, please, please get well soon! Megan, my thoughts and prayers are with you too.

  52. Jeremy says:

    Praying for you Christian, and a speedy recovery!

  53. Assegid says:

    My thoughts and prayers go out to Christian and his family.
    I wish you a speedy recovery .

    Assegid

  54. Carol Zeidman says:

    Best wishes for a complete and speedy recovery. You are in my prayers.

    t met

  55. Nicole Sanders says:

    I was really shocked to hear the news. Christian is an absolutely amazing person — am keeping all of you in my thoughts & prayers. ~n.s.

  56. bjh says:

    Umm, I say this with hesitancy, but in the last fifteen years I have heard of bike crashes because of the bike ‘malfunctioning’. One was a veteran bicyclist and the fender loosened and fell under the wheel making the bike stop instantly. Sometimes no amount of maintenance can catch everything! It also could have been one of Seattle many pot-holes in the street. Either way, I can only hope that someone is holding Christian’s hand, ’cause that is the best therapy for the human soul…

  57. Jennifer Lail says:

    Sending healing thoughts your way . . .

  58. Vicki Berman says:

    Christian is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. He does important work for sustainability and he makes the world a better place. I am sending good thoughts his way, and I hope he has a speedy recovery.

  59. Nigel Cushing says:

    A similar mysterious accident occurred involving my 17-year-old daughter a year ago on the north approach to the University Bridge on Roosevelt, on her way to practice at the Pocock Rowing Center. No witnesses to the accident and she doesn’t remember what happened when she went down on a clear, wide open bike lane with no obstructions, hitting her helmeted head on the curb. Although there were no witnesses to the actual fall, we theorized her bike was bumped, perhaps even slightly, by a passing car. Her bike wasn’t damaged, except where the handlebar hit the curb, but her face was badly scraped and she spent 6 hours in the Harborview ER. We were lucky she did not have life-threatening injuries and recovered quickly thanks to her youth. Perhaps Christian was also nudged by a passing vehicle, which can easily down a moving bike while giving its rider no warning. In any event, our best wishes to him and his family for a speedy recovery.

  60. David O. says:

    Christian is an inspiration to all who meet him and a mentor to many people who strive to lead a more sustainable lifestyle. I know he will make a full and speedy recovery. Please come back soon. NSCC is not the same without you. To the SPD: I have been riding to campus for two years and have witnessed countless drivers exceeding the speed limit on College Way and not yielding to cyclists in the lit crosswalk adjacent to the front entrance.

  61. Leif says:

    Couple updates. First, Christian is still unconscious (at least he hasn’t opened his eyes) but yesterday when a bunch of us were there he did respond to the nurses request for a thumbs up with a very enthusiastic, purposeful thumb in the air. This was the first time he had responded in a way that we were sure was actually him and not just a slight movement. It was very exciting and a good sign that he is moving in the right direction. If anybody is interested in following his progress the family setup and is regularly updating this page: http://www.carepages.com/carepages/ChristianRusby/

    It requires creating an account, but its worth it, trust me!

    In terms of the accident, after speaking with the responding officer and the EMT student who was the first responder we are pretty confident that this was a freak accident and didn’t involve any other vehicles. Despite what the police report on the blotter suggests there was actually witnesses who saw him go over his handlebars, likely after something broke off his spokes and got caught in the wheels. It certainly doesn’t change the situation, but it is nice to know that nobody caused this and then left the scene.

    Thanks to the folks who helped Christian at the time of the accident, especially the EMT student. We are very grateful you were all there.

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