Survivor learning how to walk again following Goodyear crash that killed 2 bicyclists

Clay Wells was among the people hurt when a driver plowed into a group of bicyclists, killing two and injuring 19.
Published: May. 25, 2023 at 8:28 PM MST|Updated: May. 25, 2023 at 10:05 PM MST
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GOODYEAR, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- It has been three months to the day since a pickup truck crashed into a group of bicyclists in Goodyear. Two people were killed, and 19 others were hurt along the Cotton Lane Bridge on the morning of Feb. 25.

Clay Wells has cycled around the Valley for 12 years. He was in the back of the group when a truck hit him from behind. “I drifted to the back of the group,” Wells said. “That’s the last thing I remember trying to conserve my energy for the next two hills.”

Sixty-one-year-old Karen Malisa and 65-year-old David Kero were killed in the collision. Wells said Malisa was right in front of him. “There were nights when I was in rehab where I could hear her laugh in my room. I don’t understand why I’m still here and why others are gone,” he said.

Wells doesn’t remember the impact. He was rushed to the hospital and put into a medically induced coma. He had broken bones, a fractured spine, brain bleeding and a shattered pelvis and forearm, among other injuries. “Waking up in a hospital bed and my feet, I couldn’t move my feet and they were swollen three to four times the normal size,” he explained.

Since then, Wells has been in rehab centers learning how to walk again. He was sent home last Friday but needs a walker and some help from his wife to get around. He’s trying to stay positive on his toughest journey in life. People from all over the world have sent him messages of support and ‘get well’ cards.

“I get messages from them all the time about looking forward to riding together again. I don’t know if that day will ever come. It could have been a lot worse; there were 70 of us out there that day. I’ve got to keep the proper mindset if I’m going to push through this,” he said.

Pedro Quintana-Lujan is accused of driving into the bikers. He claimed his steering wheel locked up when he hit the group. He is facing charges, but the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office sent the case back to Goodyear Police to investigate further.