Tributes are pouring in for an Edmond dentist killed over the weekend. Dr. Richard Safi died Saturday while cycling along Highway 77 in Guthrie.
Cyclist Tony Steward said Dr. Safi was doing everything right when he was struck by the driver.
“First of all, this is so sad my prayer goes to his family and friends,” said Joy Zhao, an Edmond Resident and patient of Dr. Safi.
“It is such a tragedy…it’s a loss,” said Steward.
Steward, who owns Bike Lab in Edmond, said the cycling community is close. Word traveled fast when well-known dentist Dr. Richard Safi was killed while riding his bike.
“As a father who just had my kid graduate…to think that the next day I could have finally been through graduation and graduation parties and just going out to clear my head on a ride and then it ends in a tragedy,” he said.
Steward has helped Dr. Safi on more than one occasion at his bike shop.
“Last year I remember he was training for an Iron Man, so I did some bicycle fittings for him with his bike to change I from a road bike to an aerobic iron style bike,” said the shop owner.
He said the hardest part is knowing that he was doing everything right.
“For a cyclist it is always good to have lights, reflective elements on you. It is a part of sharing the road, it takes two to share but I also know that Dr. Safi did, and it still didn’t make a difference in this situation,” he said.
Joy Zhao knew him as a patient, and said he was kind and caring. She hopes the loss sparks a conversation about sharing the road.
“It would be great if the bike lanes could be separated from the motor lanes with railings. We need better education for drivers; how to share roadways with bikers,” said Zhao.
“We are navigating the road around people’s husband’s wife’s, fathers, mother’s and sons...that consideration matters,” said Steward.
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol said the driver was in her 80's it is unclear at this point if she will face any charges.