It’s been only three days since Alistair Corkett experienced a life-changing event. He was cycling on Southeast 26th Ave when he was involved in a collision that resulted in the loss of his leg. A budding bike racer, Corkett now faces a long road to recovery and a mountain of medical bills.
Here’s a quick update of how Corkett is doing and how the community is responding to this tragic incident:
— In just two days Corkett’s fundraising campaign on GoFundMe.com has shot up to $63,894 thanks to donations from over 1,100 people. The fundraising goal is $100,000 to help with medical bills and get him back to school to complete his degree. An update shared on the campaign page says he underwent a second successful surgery yesterday that was aimed at prepping his leg for a prosthetic.
— Kenji Sugahara, executive director of the Oregon Bicycle Racing Association, visited Corkett in the hospital yesterday. Sugahara posted the image above on Facebook and said that Corkett is smiling, positive, and already thinking about bike racing despite the circumstances. “He’s a strong guy,” Sugarhara shared with me this morning, “It’s going to be a long recovery process but it’s great seeing the community support.”
“He is planning to finish the season on his bike… nothing can keep that boy down!”
— Julia Corkett, Alistair’s mom
— Corkett has seen an outpouring of support from family, his co-workers at Bike Gallery and his Monster Media teammates. When I chatted with his mom Julia Corkett at the protest on Monday she mentioned that four of his “training buddies” spent the first night in the hospital with him.
— Corkett has medical insurance but the driver of the truck he collided with does not. That means he’ll rely heavily on fundraising to cover expenses that aren’t covered by his policy (which only has short-term disability of three months while his recovery will likely take a year).
— To help raise money, Corkett’s coach (and “father figure” according to his mom) Bryant Howard is organizing a Bike Swap event on May 24th. He’s urging everyone to clean out their garages and closets and sell their used cycling gear with proceeds going to Corkett’s recovery fund (sellers can decide what portion of sales are donated). The event is scheduled for May 24th from 10-2pm at O2 Endurance Training Center in southeast Portland (3015 SE Berkeley Place). To reserve a space (booth fee is $25) contact Bryant@o2endurance.com or call (503) 318-7930.
— A legal team is already working to find out more about how the collision happened. Corkett has a lawyer and the Multnomah County DA is currently investigating the case.
And if you think Corkett is done racing bikes — think again. According to his mom, he has wasted no time planning his return. “He is already planning his training with Bryant. He is planning to finish the season on his bike… nothing can keep that boy down!”