ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) - More than 100 cyclists gathered in St. Paul to honor 75-year-old Alan Grahn as they rode in silence.
Grahn, an avid outdoorsman and family man was biking near Summit and Snelling seven days ago when he was struck by a school bus and killed.
“It’s been gut-wrenching, it’s been really difficult to understand and absorb,” said Andy Grahn, Alan’s son.
Alan’s wife and son are both overwhelmed by the outpouring of support.
“I feel really lucky, I know a lot of people really admired him,” said Andy. “I know people who have grown up without fathers and I just feel very lucky to have had a dad like that.”
During the five mile bike ride, the group made up of family, friends and strangers made a stop at the scene of the crash. Amidst the flowers, a ghost bike stands in Grahn’s memory.
“Everything I know about the man, made me know he was a kindred spirit,” said James McKenzie, a cyclist on Wednesday’s bike ride.
McKenzie didn’t know Grahn personally, nor did the Mayor of St. Paul, but both felt compelled to bike.
“I just wanted to honor him and promote bike safety and show respect for this man who I think seems like an interesting, good guy—that’s why I’m here,” McKenzie said.
“Whenever we have the loss of a cyclist or pedestrian it really feels preventable and so it’s incredible to me to see this great group of people out there to show support for the family,” said St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter.
After visiting the crash site, the cyclists pedaled toward the Mississippi River, ending their ride at a rock-climbing facility that Grahn adored.
For Grahn’s son, the memorial was a reminder to keep pushing forward.
“It’s emotionally really traumatic, but my dad would have really wanted us to carry on, and progress and be happy,” Andy said.