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Hundreds ride in memory of US masters champion Gwen Inglis

Gwen Inglis
Gwen Inglis (Image credit: USA Cycling / Twitter)

US National Champion Gwen Inglis died at the age of 46 after being struck by a suspected drunk driver on Sunday morning in Lakewood, Colorado. Hundreds gathered at the site of the crash on Tuesday for a ghost bike dedication to Inglis.

“It was so surreal to have my wife, my best friend, my stoker on my tandem not here anymore,” said Michael Inglis, Gwen’s husband, who is also a national champion cyclist.

Inglis was on a training ride near her home when she was hit by a suspected impaired driver at 10 a.m. on West Alameda Parkway, near the intersection at South Indiana Street. According to the Lakewood Police Department, who were the first to respond to the reports of a crash, Inglis was taken to local hospital where she died from her injuries.

It has been reported that Inglis was riding in a bike lane when she was hit by Ryan Scott Montoya, 29, of Denver, who was driving a compact sedan. Police took Montoya into custody and charged him with several offenses, including suspicion of vehicular homicide involving DUI or DUID.

According to information from court documents published in a report by CBS Denver, Montoya was returning from Central City where he had been the night before, and that officers stated that his mannerisms were slow and his eyes were droopy and bloodshot.

Montoya told officers, according to the documents, that he drank and used marijuana that night. He also admitted to using methamphetamine three days prior to the crash. The suspect also told officers he slept six hours the night before.

“It just hurts. Everything hurts, and it’s really enraging, beyond enraging, that in the state of Colorado it seems like people get away with lots of DUI’s,” Michael Inglis told CBS Denver.

Gwen Inglis won the 2019 US Masters road race championships in the 45-49 age group and was a member of the Back Swift-Cycleton Cycling Team.

“We are saddened to hear about the tragic loss of Gwen Inglis,” USA Cycling wrote in a post on Twitter on Monday. “The Masters Road Race National Champion was hit by a driver on her training ride Sunday morning and later passed away at the hospital. We are sending our thoughts to Gwen's family during this difficult time."

Inglis last competed at the Pueblo Classic-Steel City Road Race in April. 

Cyclists, family, friends and members of the community are showing their support and mourning of Inglis by using the hashtag #BeLikeGwen, and hundreds of members of the cycling community gathered for the installation of a ghost bike dedicated to Inglis on Wednesday.

“Colorado cycling lost one of their best yesterday. There are few words that can express the feeling of loss for any of our cycling community, and Gwen was a particularly special person. She was a multiple National and State Champion on the bike and very well known across the cycling community in Colorado," the Bicycle Racing Association of Colorado said in a statement.

"Even more impressive was her character off the bike. Knowing Gwen, you would immediately be aware of her strongest qualities. She consistently brought joy into all her relationships, and she openly accepted everyone.”

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