About 100 friends, family and fellow bicyclists gathered Friday evening for a candlelight vigil at the Totem Lake intersection where Bradley Nakatani of Kirkland was killed while riding early Thursday morning.
They huddled shoulder to shoulder to remember the 36-year-old software engineer, who worked at the Redmond company Alstom Grid, and to spread the word about the dangers of driving while impaired.
"He had lights on his helmet, lights on his bike," his aunt, Sharon Yorita, told KING5 news. "He was very safety minded. He did everything he could to keep from having an accident like this and it still happened. It makes me very angry."
Nakatani was hit by an SUV at about 3 a.m. Thursday morning while making a turn on his bicycle at the intersection of NE 124th Street and 132nd Avenue NE, just west of the Redmond/Kirkland boundary.
The driver of the SUV, Nathan Jeremie Godwin of Redmond, 26, is being held in the King County Jail in Seattle on $500,000 bail for suspicion of vehicular homicide. At his arraignment Friday, prosecutors said Godwin’s blood alcohol level tested at .078 about an hour after the accident, and that he said he had taken the drug Suboxone to treat his opiate addiction.
Friends at the vigil said Nakatani was a hardworking software engineer for Alstom Grid, an international company that provides equipment and services for the energy and transportation industries. Its Redmond office focuses on network services for those industries.
"He was exceptionally talented," Praveen Arneja, a co-worker and friend, told KING5, "very hardworking, very dedicated. Please don't drive if you're impaired. Life is precious."
For an earlier Patch story about the crash, click here.