Family Of OKC Hit-And-Run Victim Advocating For Safer Streets Initiative
OKLAHOMA CITY - The family of a man hit and killed by a car back in March 2019, is now pushing for change. Meanwhile, police continue to search for the driver responsible for their loved one's death.
The hit-and-run took place on Northwest 16th Street and Classen Boulevard. A very congested and sometimes dangerous area, that the city has been aware of for years now, according to officials.
Now a group of people hoped to make city streets safer, after so many have lost their lives.
Since January 2019, 13 people have been killed by cars while on the streets in Oklahoma City, according to police. Chad Epley, 31, a beloved chef at Vast in downtown OKC, was one of them.
Since Epley’s death in March, his family has put much of their time and energy in focusing on protecting something that was so dear to Chad -- biking.
“It’s where he felt free, and fun. And he felt safe. So, once he passed, I kind a realized as I got to know his friends more, and know his restaurant community more, how many people cycle to work,” said Epley’s sister, Chelsey Cobbs.
Tuesday, July 9, 2019 Cobbs and many others were at OKC City Hall advocating for the use of MAPS 4 money to fund bike lanes and sidewalks, to name a few, throughout the city.
“It also covers some street lights, which is also a little near and dear to me, because there was a street light on 16th and Classen that was out. It had been reported out for several months. It had been called in, I think, about six times. And then the week after Chad passed, it was fixed,” Cobbs said.
Epley's death has sparked purpose to support and protect those who travel city streets.
The hope is to create a safer environment for 8-year-olds to 80-year-olds alike.
“I don’t want to say quit biking. That’s not the answer. And Chad would not say that was the answer, you know? Then I better make a safe place for them to cycle. So, I think he would be pleased about that part,” Cobbs said.
A city-wide vote is anticipated to take place in December for MAPS 4. You can find more info for the Safer Streets proposal here.