With spring rushing in like a Nkemdiche brother and triathlon season upon us, casual bicyclists and serious training rides increase exponentially in and around Lafayette County.
As always during this time of year, L-O-U’s racing community bows for a moment of silence for Kevser Ermin who – at only 27-years-old – was killed while on a training ride on Old Sardis Road in 2011.
Ermin was an avid racer and fitness expert as well as a doctoral student at Ole Miss at the time of her death. She was tragically struck from behind during her ride. Ironically, no charges were ever filed in the incident.
The event garnered so much attention at the time; as a tribute, Lafayette County renamed a portion of Old Sardis Road for the popular Ole Miss grad. The four-and-a-half-mile stretch of road on Mississippi Highway 314 – known locally as Old Sardis Road – was renamed the “Kevser Ermin Memorial Highway” after the tragic accident.
A “ghost bike” – a bicycle painted white – was erected on the south side of the road where Ermin died and remains there to this day (see TJ Ray’s photo below).
Remember cyclists; always ride WITH traffic (never against) and concentrate diligently while training. Most pros even lobby against music being played through ear buds while you are riding so that total concentration can be achieved. Although (obviously) not perfect, safety rules are designed to protect you against the 4-ton missiles with which you share the road.
Ermin was an expert; followed all traffic rules and cycling safety rules and her tragic example should be in your mind at all times while on our roads.
And, don’t even get me started on some of the motorized vehicle operators in our area when it comes to a cyclist’s right-of-way. That’s another novel for another time.
Hotty Toddy and happy training! It is triathlon season, after all – so life is good. Be safe and enjoy it.
Jeff McVay is a staff writer and graphic designer for Hottytoddy.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.