There was a commemorative ride yesterday for the motorcyclists who were killed by a moron in a dump truck last Thursday in Phoenix.
The moron is 46-year-old Michael J. Jakscht. The four motorcyclists who died when he ran over them at a stop light have been identified as Clyde R. Nachand (pictured above), Stephen Punch, Daniel L. Butler and Dayle Veronica Downs-Totonchi. A fifth victim, Ernie Lizarraga, is still listed as being in critical condition. A sixth victim is listed in serious condition. Two of the survivors were treated and released. A ninth motorcyclist walked away from the crash with minor injuries.
The ride yesterday raised a reported $10,000. The money will be donated to the survivors of the four dead riders.
Ride Gone Bad
A small pack of eight motorcycles carrying nine people was stopped at a red light behind an SUV and a pickup truck at the intersection of 27th Avenue and Carefree Highway near I-17 when Jakscht ran over all of them, crashed into the SUV and rammed it and three other vehicles into the intersection. It was about one o’clock in the afternoon and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. The truck belongs to a hauling company named Blue Sky Sanitation.
The collision was so violent that one rider was knocked out of his boots. Witnesses said the truck continued for 50 to 75 yards after the initial impact. After the collision the SUV and the dump truck caught fire. Multiple motorcycles trapped under the truck caught fire. Phoenix Fire Deputy Chief Frank Salomon called it “a horrific scene.” Naschund, Punch; and Butler died before they could be airlifted. Downs-Totonchi died at to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Phoenix on Friday.
All of the victims were members of a very informal motorcycle club called Krusers. Krusers organized short, long and overnight rides for people who wanted to get in the wind and make new friends. All of the victims were impeccably good citizens. Nachand was a retired Navy Commander. Lizarraga is a Phoenix Fire Captain.
Police said the crash was caused by Jakscht’s “failure to control speed” but he was not cited. The Arizona Republic reported today that Jakscht was last ticketed for speeding two weeks ago and that he does not have a criminal record.