[Histonet] Steve Slap
Vinnie Della Speranza
dellav <@t> musc.edu
Fri May 28 16:18:35 CDT 2004
I am incredibly grateful for your efforts to keep us informed about Steven's progress. The news particularly hit home for me as I have been a motorcyclist for many years and currently ride every chance I get. Each time I hear of a "rider down" story I take pause and ask myself if it's time to get a new hobby. I have been a biker since I was 19. Steven is someone dear to me in the sense that he and I have collaborated and interacted over many years. He is one of those genuinely nice guys who is always a pleasure to see and speak with. I appreciate his intellect and his reasoned jusdgement. An all around good guy that is one of our NSH family. He collaborated with me by presenting at state and region meetings when I still resided in New York. I never knew that he is a fellow rider so this is something we have not had an opportunity to share.
I have prayed for Steven every chance I've gotten. He has been on my mind before I drifted off to sleep since I learned of his accident. I believe in the power of prayer and can only hope that his full recovery is part of God's plan for him.
I have so many questions about what happened to cause his accident but of course in the absence of witnesses and his ability to communicate there isn't any way we will know. Bikers often want to learn from these events iin the hope that such knowledge might help them to avoid the very same circumstances.
It is often very difficult for non-riders to understand those of us willing to accept the risk of pursuing a pasttime that is inherently dangerous. much like I cannot understand what could possibly compel someone to climb Mt Everest and although I am adventurous and a bit of a risk taker, I will have no problem feeling fulfilled without the Everest experience.
Mortorcylcing became incrementally more dangerous as SUV's began taking over the roads. For some reason, perhaps because the driver of these vehicles feels safe inside that huge machine, SUV drivers as a group tend to allow themselves to get distracted and then engage in risky behaviors that can be very harmful to others, like focusing more on their cellphone conversation or applying their makeup. But I digress. As I said, many who've never ridden cannot understand our folly of getting on a bike and riding alongside much larger vehicles at highway speeds for a thrill and sense of freedom that seems so much less important than life itself. Only a biker can understand why a dog will stick his head out of the window of a moving vehicle.
While I cannot speak for Steven I suspect that my comments may reflect some of his very own feelings. We riders intellectually know that tragedy may strike but of course we hope that it won't happen to us. we need to think that we are in sufficient control to prevent such an outcome yet in the back of our minds we know that we simply cannot prevent every possible hazard. the bottom line is that we accept the risk in order to pursue our passion. riding provides a joy to us that is hard to verbalize to others. I've told my family that should I lose my life in a cycle accidentl I hope they will take some comfort in knowing that I died doing something I truly loved. Many are much less fortunate.
On behalf of NSH, I want you and Lisa to know how much Steven means to all of us. He is truly a member of the NSH family, has given selflessly to share his expertise with others and has been a dear friend and colleague to so many. He has touched many lives and is presently in the thoughts and prayers of I dare say thousands. I know Dorothy that the news of his accident must be particulary difficult for you. We Care! You are family too.
Vinnie Della Speranza
>>> <Traczyk7 <@t> aol.com> 05/28/04 02:36PM >>>
So many of you have asked about Steve Slap that I thought the best way to get
the word out is through the net.
As many of you have already heard, Steve was in accident while riding his
Honda scooter. No one saw what actually happened, but thank God he was found
quickly. It happened near his home on May 11th and he was airlifted to the
trauma center in Springfield.
I spoke with Lisa (Steve's significant other) just this morning. Steve is
still in a coma and in ICU. For now, it's just a waiting game. The doctor's
are optimistic that he will come out of the coma but have given Lisa no time
frame. They say he is otherwise healthy and that will work well for the long
recovery process. When or if he actually gets back on his feet is not known
because there is brain stem damage. If there is any change I will let you all
The best we can do now is to keep Steve and his family in our prayers. Lisa
did say she would love to hear from Steve's friends. So if you would like to
send a card, that would be great. Include a picture, if you have one, with
who and what it's about written on the back. Part of the healing process is to
just keep talking to Steve. Cards and pictures will give Lisa and the nurses
different things to talk about with him.
Steve's son Jeremy is holding his own. He's a good kid.
Their address is: Lisa Smith & Steve Slap PO Box 31 Lake Pleasant, MA 01347
I will pass along any greetings posted to HistoNet. If you prefer, you can
email me directly at traczyk7 <@t> aol.com
Dorothy Murphy Traczyk
Hacker Instruments & Industries Inc.
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