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Toronto cyclist thanks strangers who rushed to help after bike accident

A Toronto cyclist is sending his gratitude to Parkdale residents for their help after he was struck by a car last week. 

On Aug. 6, Lliam O'Neill took to the Parkdale Community Updates Facebook group to explain what happened and to thank the residents who came to his aid. 

"I have lived, worked and volunteered in High Park-dale for over 10 years. Yesterday, my community showed its true colours: Compassion, Caring and Community," he wrote. 

O'Neill was hit on Aug. 5 while biking down Harvard Avenue. He had had been riding his bike for about 40 minutes when the incident occurred.

He had been testing out new tires and a few other modifications he had made for his bike earlier that day when the motorist drove out of an alleyway to access rear parking.

Neither O'Neill nor the driver were able to stop in time and a collision was the result.

"My right knee hit the front of her vehicle. There's been a lot of pain but the good thing is that there are no broken bones," he told blogTO.

X-rays showed a partial tear in his PCL, which is being treated by a splint and intense physiotherapy. 

"My bike is okay and that's definitely a major blessing because it's my baby," he added, noting he bought the bike over 10 years ago with his first big bonus cheque.

In his post, O'Neill thanked the person who phoned 9-1-1, EMTs, police and firefighters who attended the scene.

A special thank you went to the man who looked after his bike when he was brought to the hospital in an ambulance, a woman who reportedly ran to explain what had happened to his boss and his boss, who came running shortly after. 

"I think you've got to put the goodness back into the world that you've been able to get from it," he said. 

"I don't think you should question why someone did something good for you but you should definitely reciprocate and do your best to make sure they feel appreciated."

After he posted in the forum, he said the driver even reached out to him.

"She said she had tried to find out about my status but the police officer wasn't able to give that at the time. She gave me her phone number and said I could reach out anytime if I needed anything."

As someone who grew up with hip dysplasia, O'Neill became an avid biker to keep active. He said he will frequently cycle for 40+ kilometres. Now he's itching to get back on the bike path and is hopeful it will happen soon. 

Lead photo by

Derek Downham

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