Friends remember cyclist who died during Tour de Cape
A local bicyclist dies in Cape Coral. Video by fox4now.comvideo
CAPE CORAL, Fla. - With 70-year-old Jim Heneghan gone, friends say there's a void in the rowing community. They shared his story to show he was more than just a number, another cyclist in the race.
"When you look at someone, you never know when it's going to be the last time you see them," refelected John Bell, a friend of Heneghan's.
Long-time friends of Jim Heneghan, Alis Jordan and John Bell, remember joking with him during rowing practice the day before.
"He was all excited about going racing," said Bell, who met Heneghan in 2006, when he and others started the Cape Coral Rowing Club.
Jordan added, "Just a good all-round person," she said. "If you were ever in need, Jim would be there for you."
Heneghan, a retired engineer and coach of the Cape Coral Rowing Club died Sunday during the Tour de Cape. After colliding with another rider, police say he was thrown from his bike then hit his head. Friends say this is a tough time.
"It will be sad," reflected Jordan. "I think there's a lot of healing to do."
Heneghan had taken off his helmet for just a few minutes.
"It wasn't like Jim to me," said Jordan. "Normally, he was very safety conscious," added Bell.
When Paradise Cycle owner Jonathen Sharp heard a rider got hit, he jumped into action.
"Actually, first thing i did was check the computer system," said Sharp. "He was one of my customers."
A customer for many years.
"I think everybody in the store was quite shocked this morning," he added.
Friends say Heneghan will be missed by people of all ages. He coached high school and collegiate rowing. They say a mentor leaving a legacy of discipline, dedication and passion. Things his friends feel even now that he's gone.
"I think Jim is right there," concluded Jordan. "I personally believe when you pass away your spirit stays around and lives on."
Heneghan's friends say there will be a gathering in his honor on Saturday. It will be at Rum Runners in Cape Coral at 4 p.m.