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San Diego family, cycling community mourns death of young father killed in Escondido hit-and-run

A GoFundMe page established in Kevin Lentz's honor describes the 36-year-old as a 'loving father and family man.' His son turned one just weeks before the accident.

SAN DIEGO — A San Diego family is in mourning after the death of a young father and avid cyclist who was killed over the weekend in a hit-and-run in Escondido. Kevin Lentz has been identified as the 36-year-old bicyclist who died following a collision just before noon on Saturday.  

The hit-and-run occurred on La Honda Drive a mile from Daley Ranch Road, Sgt. Ryan Fien of the Escondido Police Department said. 

RELATED: Bicyclist killed by hit-and-run driver in Escondido, police searching for suspect

Lentz was out for a bicycle ride with friends at the time of the accident, according to a GoFundMe page established in his honor. The page says the driver of the car was on the wrong side of the road travelling at a high speed when they hit the man head-on “killing him instantly.”  

Lentz and his wife Lauren had been married for three years and their son turned one just weeks before the accident, according to the GoFundMe page. It describes him as a “loving father and family man.”  

Lauren Lentz and their family issued the following statement on Monday:  

"On Saturday, November 23rd time stood still for a community now mourning the senseless death of Kevin Lentz. Kevin was a father, husband, son, nephew, grandson, friend, avid cyclist and so much more. 

Kevin had a subtle magnetism that made him many friendships - his beautiful smile, eagerness for adventure, and willingness to lend his expertise and time to anyone who needed it meant that all these relationships will leave a lasting imprint on all who knew him.  

Memories of him will now be the example his loving family and friends use to paint a vivid picture of the man Kevin was for his young son. We have chosen not to focus on how he was taken, but redirect our energy to cherish the short time that we had with him on this earth. Kevin’s family would like to give our sincere thanks and gratitude for the amazing outpouring of love and support. For those interested in supporting Kevin’s memory through a donation to his wife and son a GoFundMe has been created. Also an education fund has been created to support his son’s future. Tax-deductible donations can be made via PayPal to Payment@celopacific.org." 

The Celo Pacific Cycling team set up an account to establish a college fund for Kevin and Lauren’s son Lawson.  

“The cycling community suffered a devastating loss this weekend,” read a statement from the nonprofit.  

Checks can be sent to:  
Celo Pacific Bicycle Racing Team, Inc
7049 Avenida Encinas 117
Carlsbad, CA 92011
Their tax # is 46-3696196

“We encourage you to share this information among our cycling family. Thank you,” their statement concluded.  

Kevin Lentz’s wife Lauren approved the publication of the following photos of her husband and their family and friends.  

On Monday, a makeshift memorial appeared at the scene of the crash.

The suspect vehicle in the deadly hit-and-run was described as a dark-colored Toyota sedan according to Lt. Scott Walters of the Escondido Police Department. It was later recovered in the 600 block of Aster Street, he said.  

Lentz, who suffered multiple traumatic injuries, was pronounced dead at the scene, Walters said. 

Escondido police asked anyone who witnessed the crash to call them at 760-839-4465. 

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