Twentynine Palms, CA– Fifteen years ago, a sailor stationed aboard the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center was struck and killed while riding his bicycle to work. Petty Officer 3rd Class Steven T. Collins, 22, a hospital corpsman, was riding eastbound on Indian Trail at 6 a.m. on Wednesday, March 6, 1996, when the tragic accident occurred.
This Saturday, August 20, at 9 a.m., a bicycle path on Adobe Road will be dedicated in his honor. The Collins Memorial Bike Path is a paved, two-way bicycle path that extends along the west side of Adobe Road from the Combat Center’s main gate to the intersection of Amboy Road. The path from the base leading into the downtown area was a component of the $4.2 million Adobe Road Improvement Project of 2010, a city road reconstruction project that received major funding from the Department of the Navy.
Mayor Jim Harris of the City of Twentynine Palms will say a few words at the dedication, which will take place on the west side of Adobe Road at the corner of Amboy Road, and he will unveil one of two monument rocks bearing bronze plaques dedicated to Collins. The second monument is located next to the main gate.
Also attending the ceremony will be Collins’ widow, Amy, who now lives in Las Vegas; and Warrick “Rick” Yeager of MCAGCC, a former riding partner of Collins, who will speak on behalf of family and friends. Following the accident, Yeager and friends of the victim raised money that was later given to the City to be used for a memorial to Collins, and Yeager became an advocate for improving road safety for bicyclists, especially those commuting to and from the base. Since that time, walkways and bicycle paths adjacent to local roadways have been a priority in planned road reconstruction projects throughout the City.
The public is invited to attend the dedication of the Collins Memorial Bike Path on Adobe Road at Amboy Road at 9 a.m., Saturday, August 20. For more information, contact City Hall at (760)367-6799.