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El Tour founder releases statement about the loss of cyclist

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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

The following statement was made by the El Tour de Tucson founder Sunday afternoon. It is copied in full verbatim.

"I was made aware of John Henderson's accident from the moment it happened and prayed for John to pull through. Minutes later I was informed that John didn't make it. At that very moment my heart sank and was filled with sadness as though I lost my own brother. 

Today I spoke with John's partner and told him that he is not alone in this loss and that he has the hearts and support of everyone involved with El Tour de Tucson.  Bill, John's partner, told me that half way through El Tour, he met up with John to give him coffee and told him that it was ok to quit, but John did not want to give up even though he was cold, freezing and wet.  John was determined to finish.

I told Bill that we are here for him and John's family and will honor and respect the wishes of the family. For now, we ask everyone - volunteers, El Tour cyclists, support staff, police agencies, sponsors and everyone associated with El Tour - to keep John's family in their prayers and thoughts over the Thanksgiving Holidays to help them through this tragic loss. Our love, prayers and thoughts are with John, his partner and family. It breaks my heart to send out this message."

Richard J. DeBernardis
Founder and Executive Director
El Tour de Tucson and Perimeter Bicycling Association of America Inc.

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