Biker Community Remembers Crash Victims

By Anna Yee

August 8, 2011 Updated Nov 3, 2013 at 2:36 PM CDT

It was a weekend memorable for more than three thousand motorcyclists in Pekin.

Less than 24 hours after the awareness ride, two of their own lost their lives for the very same reason.

Early Sunday morning, Michael Korenchuk, more commonly known as Korey, and his wife Rachel were on their motorcycle when an alleged drunk driver rear-ended them at Glen and Sheridan in Peoria.

"The mere fact that they have two little girls that will never have their parents again, it's horrible," said Larry "Rainman" Edwards, CAN YOU SEE ME NOW Ride Organizer.

According to Illinois State Police, motorcycle fatalities have risen more than 50 percent in recent years.

"The results of the motorcycle fatality crashes, most of them deal with speed," said Illinois State Police District 8 Trooper Nick Griggs.

"The other ones are dealing with factors of alcohol and drugs being involved."

Truck driver Jeffrey Kallister is charged with multiple traffic violations, including aggravated DUI.

The couple's toxicology results are still pending, but they were not wearing helmets, which Edwards says wouldn't have done much in this case.

Although Illinois doesn't require motorcyclists to wear helmets, one local group of riders is revving up support for harsher state laws, for all drivers.

East Peoria resident Shirley Lacock is the public relations officer for the Peoria-Tazewell county ABATE: A Brotherhood Aimed Towards Education.

Lacock and about 10,000 members statewide are working with their area lawmakers and state's attorneys to ensure accident penalties are enforced.

"If you kill an IDOT worker or someone alongside the road, there's a minimum fine of $10,000 with a possibility of 10 years in prison," said Lacock. "Why can't that be for everybody?"

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