MARYLAND

Bicyclist killed by falling tree in storm on C&O Canal Towpath

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This story has been updated, including the identity of the man who died.

A falling tree struck and killed a man who was bicycling on the C&O Canal Towpath between Whites Ferry and Edwards Ferry Sunday night.

A National Park Service spokesperson told ABC7 that Neil Reich, 56, of New York, was near mile marker 33 shortly before 7 p.m. when high winds and heavy rain knocked down numerous trees.

Reich was riding his bike with a companion on a two-day bike trip from Harpers Ferry, WV to Washington, D.C.

According to the companion, Reich stopped to put on his rain coat because of the storm. His companion continued biking along the towpath and stopped later to wait for Reich.

When Reich didn't catch up, the companion went back to find him and had to maneuver around some trees that had fallen. The companion then found that Reich had been struck by a fallen tree.

The companion called 911 and Montgomery County Fire and Rescue responded to the area.

The squad had to chain saw numerous trees to gain access to Reich.

The tree struck Reich in the head area. He died at the scene.

 

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