TREASURE ISLAND, Fla. (WFLA) — Concerned community members walked along Gulf Boulevard Sunday with one message: slow down.
It’s something that hits home for Pinellas County resident Julie Henning.
“About two years ago, I was actually riding my bicycle in the bike lane when I was hit by a garbage truck,” she said. “It changed my life.”
Henning was hospitalized for 30 days.
“I’m just very lucky to be alive — 14 broken bones, crushed pelvis, traumatic brain injury,” she said.
She’s not the only one.
“March of 2021, I was riding my bike in the middle of the lane on a nice, beautiful sunny day,” Bob Griendling said. “He came up behind me, maybe he was distracted, and just slammed into me from behind.”
It’s a growing issue in Pinellas County being highlighted on this World Day of Remembrance.
Matt Croasmun lost his 15-year-old nephew, Ethan Weiser, after he was hit and killed while crossing Bellair Road to get to his school bus.
“Fatality rates in Pinellas County are higher than most any other county in the country,” Croasmun said. “We have a real issue, and people are dying.”
Sunday, survivors and loved ones impacted by these crashes gave speeches, wrote signs, and made their voices heard
“Slow down,” Griendling said.
“Slow down,” Henning said.
“Slow down,” Croasmun said.