Local News

Motorcyclist dies after hitting deer

Posted September 24, 2010

— A Raleigh man was killed early Friday when his motorcycle struck a deer, authorities said.

Byron Lee King, 53, was northbound on Yates Mill Pond Road at about 5:30 a.m. when he hit a deer in the road and was thrown from his motorcycle, authorities said.

No other vehicles were involved in the incident, and it remains unclear what happened to the deer.

"He's going to be missed greatly by a lot of people, not just us in the biker community," friend Jean Dasnoit said, noting King was supposed to join his friends Friday at a Harley-Davidson festival in downtown Raleigh.

Yates Mill Pond Road motorcycle wreck Motorcyclist dies after hitting deer

"He would do anything for anyone," Dasnoit said. "He's kind of a scary-looking guy when you first meet him, but (he had) a heart of gold. Looks tough on the outside, but a big teddy bear on the inside."

King was a 6-foot-5, 320-pound joker, friends said. Yet, he was very involved in motorcycle safety education and worked with the Concerned Bikers Association, a lobbying group for motorcyclists.

He also was a regular volunteer for the Triangle chapter of the American Red Cross.

"(He would) start up our generators to make sure we have power when the power goes out. He was a faithful member of that team every month," said Tracie Brown, associate director of disaster services programs for the Red Cross.

Friends said King knew that every time he got on his motorcycle could be his last ride.

"Someone told me that, (Thursday) night, he was saying again that, if he went while riding his bike, he wouldn't mind," Dasnoit said. "When I talked to his wife (Friday) morning, she said he died doing what he loved."

King is survived by his wife, two adult daughters and three grandchildren.

The wreck happened near Yates Mill Elementary School, at 5993 Yates Mill Pond Road, and the road was blocked south of the school entrance while the Highway Patrol investigated the crash, creating significant delays as parents tried to drop their children off.


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  • jcomp Sep 27, 2010

    Byron was my Best Friend, we raced Slot Cars together and he always had time to help me set up. He was envolved in so many activities but always found time to help out when asked.
    He will be trully missed. His sense of humor was second to none, always the court jester, Santa and Space Cowboy.

  • iam4duke Sep 24, 2010

    SooSad! I remember Byron from the NC State Fair. We always called him "wooly bully"... a complete joke because he was such a kind heart! I am praying for his family, that Jesus will comfort them in these trying times.

  • sweetpea102 Sep 24, 2010

    We are truely sorry for your loss. We send the family prayers and condolences.

    The Wright Family
    FBC- Angier

  • KE4ZNR Sep 24, 2010

    My thoughts and prayers go out to Byrons Family and friends.
    He was a wonderful guy and a great ambassador for the Amateur "Ham" Radio Hobby.
    I am deeply saddened to learn of his passing.
    I will miss hearing his voice on the 27 repeater.
    He should not be a Silent Key yet....just not fair.
    73's brother
    Marshall @KE4ZNR

  • sonjiarose Sep 24, 2010

    Our condolences to the King family. Byron was a kind and lovable man, who always made us feel welcome whenever we met. He will be sorely missed and we pray that family feels comforted in their time of loss. We knew Byron through working with the Red Cross at the State Fair and as a ham radio operators. God Speed Byron. --- from N4AED & KJ4QNX

  • Realamerican71 Sep 24, 2010

    RIP, My condolences to the family and loved ones. I love riding a bike, I love the freedom. However I have said goodbye to far too many friends recently. Be careful and understand some things are out of your control. Ride safe and think way ahead.

  • K4IOA Sep 24, 2010

    Rest in peace, Byron. Condolences to the King family.

  • johnstonredneck Sep 24, 2010

    As. A close friend and fellow ham radio operator, Byron will be greatly missed. His FCC call was K4NGJ. All you could hear on any of the local repeaters was how much Byron will be missed. All the ham radio operators in the are familiar with JARSFest held in November, Byron has been the guiding force behind that for several years

    73 Good friend De KD4UJC

  • Just the facts mam Sep 24, 2010

    I love riding my motorcycle, but story after story of someone dying while riding a motorcycle correctly scares me. I stay off major roads, and off country 2 lane roads as much as I can now (I ride my motorcycle around neighborhoods as much as I can where the speed limit is 25mph). I drive defensively as much as I can, but I still worry. I hope other riders such as myself learn from these accidents so they are not the next story.

  • seagondollar Sep 24, 2010

    The Moto Guzzi community is sorrowed to hear a fellow rider is lost. I don't know if I knew him, but probably met him somewhere along the way and would like to send condolences to the family. He didn't deserve this, nor does his family.