SALT LAKE CITY — Adam and Matthew Bullard were not just brothers; they were best friends.
Cory Spencer met the brothers at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in California more than 20 years ago. The retired police officer now lives in Southern Utah, but he continued to ride with the brothers even after leaving the Golden State.
“I tried to keep up on our first century ride when Matt was first diagnosed with MS, I would say approximately 10 years ago now," Spencer reflected. "That was my first century ride as well, and I did it to kind of join with Matt and Adam and give some support, but I couldn't keep up. I made it, but they're just two incredible guys.”
The brothers' death is a shock to their communities in California and here in Utah. On the Tour of Saint George Sunday, a reckless driver hit the brothers, and they later died in the hospital, officials said. The SUV driver who hit the two was arrested and booked into jail; she faces multiple felony counts, including automobile homicide and driving under the influence.
Adam Bullard was as known in southern California as 'The Hill-Slayer,' logging one million feet in elevation gain on his bike every year. For the past two years, Adam worked multiple days a week at The Cyclery Bike Shop in La Mirada, California.
“We had no idea just how big this guy was, just how well known this guy was," said Steve Herrera, owner of The Cyclery. "I mean, thousands and thousands of people."
"No, it's true," added Mark Mendez, manager at The Cyclery. "He was a big influence in the cycling community, everybody. There isn't a person that you can go you can see out here on the trails that didn't know about the legend of Adam, because he was legendary.”
Biking grew into a shared passion for the two and their children.
“Matt learned when he was developed with MS was that staying physically fit was going to be a big part of keeping MS at bay," said Herrera.
The two lifelong members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints were always doing everything to stay safe while biking: never riding without helmets, and even mounting rearview warning devices on their bikes to alert them of traffic approaching from behind, said Spencer.
"They’d take every safety precaution," he said.
Spencer, with help from Herrera, launched a gofundme, creating 'The Adam and Matt Bullard Memorial Fund.’ As of tonight, more than $80,000 dollars has been raised by friends and strangers.
“Families need not to worry about financial things at this time in their lives," said Spencer. "I mean, five children just lost their fathers, two women lost their spouses. It didn't need to happen.”
You can donate to the gofundme here.