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Family of US diplomat killed while riding her bike overwhelmed with support, donations

The husband of Sarah Langenkamp raised more than $150K in two days for safety improvements.

WASHINGTON — Nearly a week after a U.S. diplomat was struck and killed by a truck driver in Bethesda, tens of thousands of dollars have poured in to support her family and a cause to improve safety conditions for bicyclists. 

The husband of Sarah Langenkamp created a GoFundMe page as a fundraising effort to work with local and national cycling safety organizations to advocate for safer bike routes.

Sarah Langenkamp, a State Department employee of 17 years, died as she was riding her bicycle in the bike lane on River Road near Brookside Drive on Aug. 25. Police said the driver of a flatbed truck turned into a parking lot and ran over her. 

Her husband, Dan Langenakamp, spoke to WUSA9 to urge officials to add more safety features on the road to avoid another death and injury including barriers, wider lanes and clearer markings. 

In one day, the GoFundMe raised more than $126,000; the goal was $50,000.

As of noon Wednesday, the donation page raised more than $151,000.

"We have been so touched by the outpouring of sympathy and support since putting together this campaign," Dan Langenkamp said. "It's clear to me that people realize there is an issue here that affects people across the country, and they want to do something about it before more people are killed."

The family is planning a bike ride from the Bethesda Metro stop to the crash site on Monday morning to honor her. 

Sarah Langenkamp and her family just moved to Bethesda less than a month ago, weeks after evacuating from Ukraine. She and her husband worked as diplomats overseas. 

"It's a disgrace that someone can survive wartime in Ukraine only to die because our streets are #DangerousByDesign," one advocate said. 

"It should not take a death for people to look at this to say this needs to be safe," Miriam Schoenbaum, a board member with Action Committee for Transit, said. "There are a lot of plans and a lot of words are said. There is some action. There is nowhere near enough action for the scope of the problem."

The recent incident marks the third bicyclist death in 2022, per an independent count from ACT.

In June, an 18-year-old boy also died while riding his bike in Montgomery County.

RELATED: Pedestrian struck, killed in Montgomery Co.

RELATED: Woman hit by flatbed truck while riding bike killed

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