Motorcycle enthusiast dies in accident
By ROBERT WILSON, firstname.lastname@example.org June 16, 2007
ALCOA - John E. Younce Jr.'s chopper motorcycle was his first.
At 46, he and his wife, Suzanne, had decided to get the necessary training and buy themselves a pair of motorcycles so they could ride together on weekends.
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His was a beauty, sporting a stars-and-stripes paint job. Hers was a Harley-Davidson. They got them in March.
"He was just getting used to it," Suzanne Younce said.
Her husband was sitting still on the chopper at an Alcoa intersection when it was struck from behind by a Ford Mustang. The car's driver, Margaret L. Riddle of Louisville, said she did not see the motorcycle.
Younce, who was wearing a helmet, was thrown off the motorcycle and landed "on his head causing a fatal injury," the report says. Younce was taken to Blount Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Younce - known as Gene to his family, John to his business associates and others - was the owner of Advance Transmissions on Western Avenue in Knoxville.
His motorcycle had only 1,800 miles on it when it was hit shortly after 9:30 p.m. Thursday on Hall Road at Associates Boulevard.
An Alcoa Police Department report says Riddle told officers she was approaching the intersection and saw the traffic light turn from red to green. She did not see Younce's motorcycle in the left southbound lane, the same one she was driving in.
Riddle's Mustang rear-ended the motorcycle, propelling it across the intersection, according to the report.
Suzanne Younce said her husband got his motorcycle after it was declared totaled following a fire at the facility "out West" where it was made. It was bought, she said, "for salvage," and thus her husband was able to get it at a great price.
Not willing to sit at home while he went out riding, Suzanne Younce said she also trained on motorcycle skills and safety and got her own. The couple would ride "to Townsend and Madisonville and on back roads."
She said her husband was "tender-hearted, always ready to help, particularly if somebody was having car problems."