Good Samaritan Relives Horrific Bike Wreck

Reidel Post tells Patch about the scene she encountered Saturday morning after a bicycle and motorcycle collided. Because she had been critically injured almost 25 years ago, she knew what to say amid the terror.

The bicycle rider's name is Frank, and Reidel Post doesn't know much more than that, except that he's in stable condition after colliding with a motorcycle on Santiago Canyon Road.

Based on what Post saw Saturday on the two-lane stretch of highway, stable is good enough.

A day earlier, Post feared the worst as she tried to comfort Frank and his 13-year-old son, who witnessed the collision from his bicycle.

The incident took place near Modjeska Grade Road, about a mile from Cook's Corner, at 11:27 a.m.

Post, who lives in Placentia, came upon the scene shortly after it occurred. It  immediately reminded her of her own incident 24 years ago, when she was critically injured on Carbon Canyon Road and airlifted to Western Medical Center in Santa Ana, same as Frank.

Like Frank, who has children ages 15, 13 and 10, she had small children at the time.

A FedEx driver was among the first on the scene after Post's accident, and gave her some bad news. "He told me that both men were gone, meaning dead," Post recalled on Sunday by email.

On Saturday, Frank was on his stomach, with "a lot of blood coming from his nose," adding to the horrific image.

"No one was by the bicyclist so I lightly touched and rubbed his arm and called him 'Sweetie' so if he was still alive, he would hear and feel some tenderness in the midst of the terror," Post said.

"I know what that feeling is like, so it was my time to repay a debt of many years ago."

About five minutes passed when Post noticed a small group huddled around the motorcyclist, who was laying to the side of the road well away from Frank. She thought the distance between the bodies was indicative of the force of the impact. The motorcyclist was still wearing his helmet. He was taken by ambulance to Mission Hospital.

Frank was laying alone in the middle of the road, unconscious on the hot pavement.

"I thought Frank was dead when I arrived on the scene," Post said. "I shaded his face with my jacket, talked to him as though he was conscious."

Eventually, Frank opened his eyes and tried to get up. "But at this point," Post said, "there were several of us who told him he could not get up. He kept trying to get up, but we told him no."

Frank was transported by ambulance down the road where a helicopter could take him to the hospital.

Post said the boy, whom she declined to name, was beside himself.

"He was a very mature and smart 13-year-old," she said. "When I asked him to look at me so he would not see his father being turned over and placed on the gurney, it was almost impossible for him to do. I told him, 'I'm so sorry for what you saw happen to your father.'

"He replied while crying, 'I wish I hadn't seen it, but I did.' I told him that I predict he will be OK. I couldn't promise anything, but I believe it will be all right after he is taken to the hospital."

She then told the boy that 24 years ago, "I was in worse shape than your father, and look at me now."

The boy managed a laugh. Hopefully, Post managed to be right.

Post said she was relieved to receive a phone call Sunday from Frank's wife, who said her 50-year-old husband was stable at Western Medical Center.

MisturChips October 29, 2012 at 02:32 PM
Fanastic! Folks like this who bother to care when stumbling across an accident scene play a pivotal role in the fabric of our society. It is indeed good to hear some follow-up information. I still would like to know exactly what went down so others can avoid the same circumstances.
Larry J. Hazuka October 29, 2012 at 04:09 PM
As a former resident of Rancho Santa Margarita, and well aware of the area as Cooks Corner, also a bike rider, those back roads are easy to spead up on and also to veer into and over the lines around corners, I suggest they slow the speed limit down, but as a rider and driver these things never do balance....I am glad to see the gentlemen ok.....Larry
diane garner October 29, 2012 at 04:50 PM
She played the Good Samaritan for this family. How wonderful that she stopped and stayed with them...an earthly angel for sure!
Martin Henderson (Editor) October 29, 2012 at 05:32 PM
I don't make it back there very much. What's the speed limit through there, and what's the speed that people usually drive through there?
Britspan October 29, 2012 at 05:38 PM
Less than one mile passing Modjeska Grade Road on your left is a reminder of our dear friend Christy Kirkwood (cyclist) who was in her bike lane, was killed due to high speed vehicle. There is a sign there to remind drivers stay aware. Praying and hoping that people would respectfully drive speed limit.
Tracie Stephenson October 29, 2012 at 09:05 PM
The motorcyclist name is Nick....he's far from ok. He's in a coma with multiple injuries including an incredible amout of road rash. He is the sweetest, kindest, single father you'd ever meet. He was on his way to work when the accident happened. I'm so glad people stopped to help and I agree with Larry about the canyon. This accident and many others could have been avoided if each person does his or her share of road safety. There's no crosswalk or light anywhere near this area. I have seen many road and mtn cyclists cross the canyon illegally....PLEASE everyone be careful and be mindful that motorcycles and cars have a very hard time seeing us cyclists around that corner. Make better decisions on where to cross...it's not worth dying over. Please pray for Nick and his family. He's still in ICU and we don't know what his future holds.
JB October 29, 2012 at 09:49 PM
I totally understand her compulsion to come to the aid of the victim. I too was involved in a near-fatal car accident 26 years ago. I was so grateful to the passers-by and witnesses who stopped to pray for and encourage me until the paramedics showed up. Whenever I am able, I stop to offer emotional & prayer support to victims of any accident. Most recently, it was for a motorcyclist who'd been involved in a hit-and-run just outside the restaurant I was dining at with my family. His bike had been thrown about 500 feet from where he landed at the side of the road; it was totaled. He was wearing his helmet but the rest of his body appeared to be badly injured. I'm glad the "Good Samaritan" who stopped to shade & encourage the bicyclist in this accident (and his son) shared her story. It helps me to know that others appreciate the efforts made by caring citizens who do whatever they can, however small or generous, can make a difference. So glad to know the bicyclist is in stable condition.
TH October 29, 2012 at 10:43 PM
The man involved in this accident (the bike rider) is a friend, a father, a husband, your neighbor. Please tell your friends and family - all who drive to please keep a watchful eye out for bikers and give them all a little extra room and hopfully we can avoid tragedies like this from happening in the future. And to the Good Samaritian - Thank you for the comfort you provided at the scene.
Martin Henderson (Editor) October 30, 2012 at 01:54 AM
Reidel Post wanted me to acknowledge that she was not the only person who stopped, there were several others who took on this daunting scene. To all of them, on behalf of the community, thank you.
Kitty Kat October 30, 2012 at 10:18 PM
Kudos to the people who helped both riders. It's so nice to hear there are good people in this world. I hope both a speedy recovery.
Katie October 31, 2012 at 10:37 PM
Is there any update on Nick? Hoping he is okay.
chris ernst November 05, 2012 at 05:48 PM
Frank has been through so much in life as it is, such a bummer that this happened. Please keep a watchful eye at all times...LIFE is precious and can never be taken for granted. Best wishes to he and his family. love, the ernst family
Bob Hunt November 06, 2012 at 06:09 AM
The legal limit is 55 but 65 is closer to the average. Try doing 60 and often you'll pick up a caravan behind you, particularly in the morning and afternoon rush hours. Leads to illegal passing too, sometimes it seems safer just to go with the flow.
Hoopsdoc November 07, 2012 at 06:37 AM
My prayers go out to both these men and their families May the grace of The Lord find favor and bring about recovery. In Jesus Name.
Tracie Stephenson November 07, 2012 at 04:50 PM
Wanted to give you all an update on Nick Walters. He's still in a coma, but is making small improvements. He was battling pneumonia and an infection. His body was iced down for several days to bring down his 103 temp...it's now at 99. They have him in a state of the art bed that rotates him from side to side to keep the fluid in his lungs moving. He is very swollen and the road rash we were expecting to see was minimal. We continue to pray for him & his family daily. His wonderful parents Robert & Judy are by his side daily. He's had many visitors that talk to him & encourage him to fight his way back to us. His 2 children are forever hopeful they can talk to their dad very soon. He's a fighter, and a lovely human being. Please think of him when you are making decisions while riding your bike or driving a car. I will update more when I have any new information. Thanks for your thoughts & prayers!


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