Family will remember Arlington Heights cyclist for adventurous spirit

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Family will remember Arlington Heights cyclist for adventurous spirit – Chicago Tribune (PDF)


Christopher Hanson (Hanson family photo)

Christopher Hanson (Hanson family photo)


From the article:

An adventure seeker and athlete who pushed the limits at every chance, Christopher Hanson will be remembered by family for not only his thrill-seeking stunts but his love and generosity.

Hanson, 67, of Arlington Heights, died Sept. 23 after a bike accident on the Levis Mound bike trail in Neillsville, Wisconsin, according to the Clark County sheriff’s office. He was riding his bicycle with a helmet on when his tire hit something causing him to fly off his bike and strike his head on a rock or log on the ground. His two bike partners contacted police, and a helicopter flew him to Eau Claire hospital where he later died.

“Friends tell me he went out the way he wanted to,” said his wife, Cheriann Hanson. “Yes, I tell him not to do it. He says he has to live his life the way he is. He’s not doing it to be mean. He was always good at it. But someone with common sense, at some point your luck is going to run out.

Every year for the last three years, Hanson and his two biking friends planned an annual bike trip to Black River Falls. This summer, they drove to the Kettle Moraine State Forest in southern Wisconsin for their three-day bike trip last week, Hanson said. She talked to her husband Tuesday, and the bikers had traveled on a path north of where they normally rode and biked 16 miles. On Wednesday, they got up and went to Black River Falls, and the terrain was difficult. At the particular spot of his accident, they were going downhill.

“He didn’t keep his guard up, and ended up veering to the right, hitting a rock or log, which flipped him completely over on his head,” Hanson said. One of his partners gave him CPR, but after paramedics took him by helicopter to the trauma center, he died at 4:58 p.m. Wednesday. An autopsy later revealed a hematoma on the brain and broken C1 and C2 vertebrae, she said.

“My heart is broken,” said Hanson, who would have celebrated 30 years with the love of her life Oct. 12. The couple, who met in West Virginia and moved to Arlington Heights in 1991, had two children, Lindsay, 27, and Kristan, 23.

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