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Cyclist dies two days after being hit by van in St. Petersburg

ST. PETERSBURG — A 48-year-old bicyclist critically injured last week after being struck by a van died on Saturday, police said.

Roger Soloman of St. Petersburg was pronounced dead at 6:44 a.m. at Bayfront Medical Center, two days after the crash.

"He was a very kind and caring guy that would help anybody at anytime," said Soloman's sister, Cynthia Hollon.

St. Petersburg police said Soloman and Phillip R. Billups of Largo were pedaling together about 9:45 a.m. Thursday on Gandy Boulevard when they veered into the eastbound traffic under the Interstate 275 overpass.

Christopher Allen Foran, 39, of Tierra Verde was going east in a 1999 Chevrolet van when he saw Soloman in his path, police said. Foran hit the brakes and steered into the center lane, where he was rear-ended by a 1999 Toyota driven by Vasil Dimitrov, 28, of St. Petersburg.

Soloman, who police said was intoxicated, was hit by the van and thrown. Billups, who had retreated to the median, was struck by the Toyota as it was coming to a stop, police said.

Soloman was taken to Bayfront Medical Center in critical condition, police said. Billups was treated at the scene and released.

Neither of the drivers was injured, and no charges were announced.

With Soloman's death, at least 14 cyclists have died in crashes in the Tampa Bay area since July.

Cyclist dies two days after being hit by van in St. Petersburg 03/06/11 [Last modified: Sunday, March 6, 2011 11:20pm]
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