Motorcyclist dies in Rockaway Avenue crash in Rockville Centre


A 41-year-old motorcyclist died on Aug. 3 after he struck a curb, clipped a parked car and collided with a tree, according to Nassau County police.

The man, whose identity the police had not yet released at press time on Tuesday, was riding a 1999 Harley Davidson motorcycle northbound on Rockaway Avenue at around 12:03 a.m. when he struck the curb while attempting to navigate a curve in the roadway, detectives said. The motorcycle veered off the road and struck a 2014 Kia parked in the driveway of 115 Rockaway Ave.

The motorcyclist traversed shrubbery and was then ejected off the bike before striking a tree. He was rushed to South Nassau Communities Hospital in Oceanside, where he was pronounced dead at 12:52 a.m., police said. The investigation is ongoing.

“I heard a tremendous bang,” Ignacio Ortega, who lives in the house where the man crashed, recalled later that day. He said he peeked through the window and saw nothing, but when he went outside, he found police and firefighters trying to revive a man, who he said was sprawled across his neighbor’s front lawn. “To no avail, sad to say,” Ortega said.

He gestured to the skid marks on his concrete driveway and the tire trail leading to the scene of the crash — where the motorcyclist collided with a tree on his neighbor’s lawn — and, shaking his head, let out a sigh of astonishment.

“It’s like one after the other,” Ortega said. Two years ago, he remembered, a truck traveling the same route took down the pole in front of his house, which has since been replaced. Last year during a rainstorm, he added, a taxicab coming off Woods Avenue crashed into a tree on Rockaway Avenue across from his home. “This area … it’s sweet for accidents,” Ortega said.

Valley Stream resident Bob Currie, who said he was a friend of the motorcyclist, stopped by the location later that day. “You want to talk about a guy … he was always smiling, always full of life,” he said.

Currie noted that the motorcyclist was an officer in the New York City Police Department but did not wish to identify him.

He walked closer to where his friend struck the tree. “I still can’t believe it,” he said.