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Fatal Divvy Crash Victim's Family Suing Truck Driver, Owner

By  Alex Nitkin and Kelly Bauer | August 1, 2016 11:53am | Updated on August 1, 2016 3:27pm

 From left: Nancy Murray, attorney Jeffrey Kroll, Jim Murray. Inset: Virginia
From left: Nancy Murray, attorney Jeffrey Kroll, Jim Murray. Inset: Virginia "Ginny" Murray.
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DNAinfo/Alex Nitkin / Family photo

DOWNTOWN — The family of a Divvy cyclist who died after being hit by a truck in Avondale last month is suing the truck's driver and the company that employs him, attorneys announced Monday.

On the morning of July 1, Virginia "Ginny" Murray, 25, was biking next to a flatbed truck on Sacramento Avenue, according to police. She and the truck driver both tried to turn east onto Belmont Avenue when she was hit, leaving her with fatal injuries.

The incident was the first-ever fatality within the Divvy system and likely the first time in U.S. history that a bike-sharing rider was killed while on a rented bike. In April, Quartz reported that of the 30 bike-sharing programs in cities across the country, no fatalities had been reported. 

 Virginia Murray, 25, died after being hit by a truck in Avondale July 1.
Virginia Murray, 25, died after being hit by a truck in Avondale July 1.
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Kevin Schroeder

Murray's parents are suing the driver of the truck, Cosmin A. Radu, and the owner of the truck, A&B Flooring Supplies Inc., calling the man "negligent in failing to keep a proper lookout for bicyclists on the roadway," according to attorney Jeffrey J. Kroll.

The family will specify how much they're seeking in damages as the case unfolds over the coming months, Kroll said.

The lawsuit, filed Monday morning, claims that Murray wore a helmet and carefully abided by traffic laws when she was struck.

A University of Illinois in Urbana alumna, Murray was on her way to a babysitting job the morning she was killed, Kroll said. She had recently left a job at Blue Cross Blue Shield and was applying to postgraduate programs.

Kroll described her as an "outdoors woman" with a newfound passion for running and biking.

Virginia Murray's parents, Jim and Nancy Murray, sat beside Kroll during a Monday news conference but did not speak.

Beyond being compensated for their grief and their daughter's burial expenses, Kroll said, the family's long-term goal was to push the city to step up its traffic enforcement and develop a better plan to prevent bike accidents.

"This is a parent's worst nightmare come true — it's been horrific for Nancy this past month, it's been horrific for Jim," Kroll said. "But they don't want this happening to another family. So they're trying to determine ... what is the city doing to safely allow these bicycles to coexist with traffic?"

The lawsuit names Divvy and the City of Chicago as "correspondents in discovery" — meaning that they'll be asked to provide evidence for the case — but neither entity is being asked to pay damages.

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