Man dies after mysterious crash in NE Seattle. RIP RC Rogers


Photo courtesy of his sister Lisa.

Rollin “RC” Rogers has passed away days after a mysterious crash near his NE Seattle home Saturday, his sister Lisa tells Seattle Bike Blog. He was 55.

Our deepest condolences go to his wife Lisa, sons Andy and Mark, and the many other loved ones in his life.

Although KOMO reported the crash as a hit-and-run, Seattle Police say they have yet to find a clear sign of another vehicle being involved in the incident on NE 98th Street near 27th Ave NE.

It’s not clear how he suffered such significant and ultimately fatal injuries due to a fall. The official cause of death is “blunt force injury of the head.” The investigation is ongoing.

His sister (also named Lisa) described him as “a man of few words, the ones that count, he was the kind of guy who went above and beyond, doing what needed to be done. With his dry sense of humor, and contagious laugh he was a tireless  mentor and friend, devoted husband and dad, loving brother and son. He will be missed more than words can say.”

Here’s her full note about him:

RC Rogers III, an avid competitive cyclist, team member and expert commute cycler, was in a devastating accident only a block from his home in N. Seattle on Saturday 9/18 at approximately 6:45 pm. The 911 call was at 6:53. The police are considering it a hit and run although there are no witnesses – in addition questionable road conditions from recent road work appear to have contributed.

He was riding down a minor incline testing some work he had done on his bike, as he had down countless times before and somehow fell in such a way that he suffered multiple broken bones, including his shoulder, clavicle/sternum and arm, collapsed lung, contusions all over his body, and a massive head injury. His bike, with the chain off and only the handle bars affected was found 10 feet beyond his fallen body.

Just the week before he had received the honor of being given the Leadership award by his employer, REI. The presentation of his award can be seen on youtube. “RC Rogers  – leadership award”:

He was finally in his dream position, for his dream employer as the manager of the Store Design, Visual Merchandizing Fixture Program at REI. He leaves behind his wife, Lisa, their sons Andy, a freshman in college and Mark age 14 and other close family members including his mother, sisters, nieces and nephews, and his dear in-laws.

He was a steadfast, intense man and a competitive cyclist, who brought his passion for excellence to everything he engaged in. RC was a man of few words, the ones that count, he was the kind of guy who went above and beyond, doing what needed to be done. With his dry sense of humor, and contagious laugh he was a tireless  mentor and friend, devoted husband and dad, loving brother and son. He will be missed more than words can say.

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24 Responses to Man dies after mysterious crash in NE Seattle. RIP RC Rogers

  1. David Wiegand says:

    I worked with RC on just one project, but what a guy… Really thoughtful and creative, with a super strong can-do approach. He will be sorely missed.

    My sincerest condolences to his family. What a tragic loss.

    – David

  2. Jim says:

    Tragic. It sounds like the world is a better place because of RC.

  3. Deirdre Brownlow says:

    RC was a beautiful person who helped whenever and however he could. Condolences don’t express the sadness we feel for his family. RC deserves more than Rest In Peace…maybe on the loftiest feather bed, in comfort, with the love of those missing him surrounding him. You were a great man RC.

  4. Jason O. says:

    My heart breaks for the family, friends, and co-workers of RC! I worked with RC at REI and have been blessed to see his influence and hear his laugh in our store in Fort Collins! I had the good fortune to “hang out” with him and his team in the special evolution space in Georgetown and appreciated his impact in big and small ways! Prayers of comfort to those that knew and loved him. We last exchanged high fives at the REI leadership conference following his leadership award. His influence on those around him and our co-op will remain!

  5. Elizabeth Dowd says:

    RC was an amazing man we all admired and loved. He was a mentor, a friend, rock solid coworker, a great designer, amazing employee and one of the best leaders I have ever worked with. His light shined so bright.
    I and the entire REI store design and visual merchandising team learned so much from him.
    He did more for REI in 2 years than many have done in 20. His touch is on so many experiences in our stores and on us…his legacy will live on.
    We will take what you taught us. We will listen. We will commit. We will try and be the person you were. Your presence made us better people.
    We love you RC. You were taken from us to soon.

    Do not stand at my grave and weep
    I am not there. I do not sleep.
    I am a thousand winds that blow.
    I am the diamond glints on snow.
    I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
    I am the gentle autumn rain.
    When you awaken in the morning’s hush
    I am the swift uplifting rush
    Of quiet birds in circled flight.
    I am the soft stars that shine at night.
    Do not stand at my grave and cry;
    I am not there. I did not die.
    Mary Elizabeth Frye

  6. Mike Cochran says:

    A great man who while with a Seattle Design Firm in the late 90’s, introduced our company BFC Architectural Metals to many N.Y. Retail Design firms. He was an astute buyer, never mixed words, and a great communicator. He was one of the few commercial customers who would take time to call and say “Thank You, Good Job.”
    R C offered an incentive just in his tone when asking sometimes for challenging schedules. You were anxious to get started just to please him and later get a call of gratitude. I am touched by having known him. God bless you RC, and God bless your family.

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  8. Joe Cunnane says:

    RC was on the set up team at St. Catherine’s school auction a few years ago. It was late in the day and time was short, the auction started in a few hours. The lead decorator was getting nervous as numerous large strings of lights were supposed to be hanging thirty feet high in the middle of the room using volley ball poles (not the best design plan). RC listened calmly to the sharp and anxious pleas of the lead decorator, and came up with a smart plan. He went home and was back in thirty minutes with the solution to hang the lights. He cut out a large circular piece of wood to hang from the top of the poles and fix the lights to it. Nice Work RC! RC never lost his cool or said a negative word. Later, the lead decorator asked me if she had been too hard on him, I said, “No, it looks like he can take it!” I learned a lot from RC that day, thank you, RC. And my deepest condolences to the family.

  9. Emily Nevin says:

    Oh no…. He was always so nice to me when we met on rides, always knew my name, always teased me a little with that dry humor. Rest now friend. Your race is run. So so sorry I didn’t know you even better. ?

  10. nancy edelstein says:

    To RC’s family, I am just so sad and sorry to hear about this. It was always such a pleasure visiting with him at the office for a few minutes every time I dropped by. He was the calm inside the storm. He was a man of integrity. I am so sorry that he is gone. Such a loss.

  11. Ashley Arhart says:

    I had the great privilege to know and work with RC. My heart goes out to his family. Much of the Seattle design community mourns with you.

  12. Brian Snyder says:

    I’m without words… As a former teammate of RC’s on 2 separate clubs, his quiet thoughtfulness was matched only by his smile and laughter.

    To think that after the thousands of miles we all pedaled together, the near crashes in each Crit, the wind, rain, hail, ice and even sunshine… it would be just a block away on an innocent shakedown ride.

    My thoughts to Lisa and the kids… his sister and remaining family. Words cant express my heartbreak for you now. May the community he cherished both on wheels and off surround you now in support. You are beautiful.


  13. Diana Epstein says:

    To all the loved ones of RC:

    I was close to him during the time I worked for Mobius and we started just working on a few projects together and soon he became a close friend. We spent hours on the phone, when we should have been discussing business, just sharing ideas on decorating, stock tips, and sharing stories of family. I adored him. My heart breaks for all of his loved ones, whom he spoke of often with such love.

    Diana Epstein

  14. Elizabeth Dowd says:

    A college fund has been setup for Andy and Mark, RC’s sons.

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  16. DeeJay MacKenzie says:

    RC, I thank you for all the morning smiles , the Sweat and hard work you gave me every morning in class ! Your encouragement that (“Things will get easier”) as I hauled my lil man into the stidio :) Your positive attitude and inspiration never went unseen! You have a beautiful soul and will always be remembered by that ! I’m so sad such a horrible thing would happen to such an amazing person, you will be missed dearly at Hot Yoga Inc. !!! – Those we LOVE don’t go away, – they walk beside us everyday… – unseen, unheard, but always near, – Still LOVED, still missed and very dear. – Sending LOVE n Light to help heal the hearts of his beautiful wife and amazing sons – Love Lots your favorite Hot yoga teacher , DeeJay ;)

  17. Lisa says:

    Is there an update on the cause of this accident? I think the ghost bike eas a bit premature. Was it a hit and run or a tragic accident? Either way it is dad but I think the ghost bike has a stronger impact if it is used for vehicle versus cyclist accidents. the initial report doesn’t have a clear cause.

  18. We worked together through many entities over the years RC, when you find quality people in the world you stick with them; you were finally “home” at REI. (though you always “gave it your all” where ever you were, even when they didn’t deserve it) I expect nothing less going forward. xxoo

  19. Elizabeth l. Gomes says:

    RC was my son, as I read all the things that you have written about him the tears flow, I miss him so much. He was a child that was easy to love and grew into a wonderful man. I love you so much my son. Mom

  20. Elizabeth l. Gomes says:

    RC was my son thank you for all of your compliments. He was a wonderful man. I miss him so much.

  21. Lisa says:

    I understand that he was a wonderful man but could you please remove the ghost bike from the corner of NE 98th St and 27th Ave NE. I live right near where he was killed. I work as a paramedic and it is very disturbing to me to be reminded of death on the roadways everytime I come have to go by. This is my home and I need to be able to leave my job behind when I’m not working. This memorial just dredges up horrible memories for me of people and cyclists being hit on the roadways that I have responded to over the years. Please remove it! I am also an avid cyclist and support that we need safer streets but this is personally a horrible reminder for me!

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