Driver Kills Cyclist at Northwest Corner of Midway Airport


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The crash site from the driver’s perspective.

Less than two weeks after a bicyclist was fatally struck at Archer and Lawndale avenues in the Brighton Park neighborhood, another bike rider was struck and killed in the adjacent Garfield Ridge community.

At about 12:45 a.m. Sunday morning, Park Forest resident Gary Reyes, 44, was cycling eastbound on 55th Street at Central Avenue, according to Officer José Estrada from Police News Affairs. This large intersection, located at the northwest corner of Midway Airport, features five lanes of traffic in both directions.

Reyes was struck by Elizabeth Lara-Salas, 37, who was driving southbound in a 2011 Chevrolet Impala, Estrada said. He was taken to Christ Hospital in critical condition and later pronounced dead, according to the police.

Police charged Lara-Salas with “failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident,” Estrada said, adding that it is not yet known whether the cyclist or the driver had the right of way, and that there weren’t many witnesses. Major Accidents is investigating the crash.

Fatality Tracker: 2014 Chicago pedestrian and bicyclist deaths

Pedestrian: 17 (5 were hit-and-run crashes)
Bicyclist: 4 (1 was a hit-and-run crash)