Home Life Accidents HIT & RUN: Cyclist in critical condition after U.S. 221 accident

HIT & RUN: Cyclist in critical condition after U.S. 221 accident

By Jeffrey S. Swagger, Master Trooper, North Carolina Department of Public Safety, North Carolina State Highway Patrol. October 10, 2019. GRANDFATHER MOUNTAIN, NC — On Thursday, 10 October 2019, at approximately 11:40 a.m., the NC State Highway Patrol (SHP) responded to and is investigating a hit & run collision in Caldwell County on US 221 near Grandfather Mountain.

COVER IMAGE: The suspect vehicle is believed to resemble this photographic image, provided courtesy of NC Highway Patrol.

A cyclist was traveling north on US 221.  A southbound minivan crossed the double yellow line in a curve, collided head-on with one of the cyclists, and continued without stopping.  The injured cyclist has been identified as Ignacio Giraldo, 61, of Sunrise, Florida.  He was cycling in a group with his daughter and two others.  Giraldo was airlifted to Johnson City Medical Center in Johnson City, Tennessee in critical condition with life-threatening injuries.

Investigators are searching for a charcoal grey 2005-2010 Toyota Sienna minivan which may have damage to the right front, headlight, and/or right front fender area.  Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the SHP Troop F Communications Center at 828-466-5500.

Editor’s Note: Our original headline mistakenly indicated that the cyclist had been killed when in fact he was critically injured. We sincerely apologize for the misinformation and thank our several readers who caught the error.


  1. James, the driver was probably not blinded by the sun since the incident happened at midday. And being blinded by the sun doesn’t make you drive off after hitting a cyclist.

  2. I hate this happened. Hopefully they catch the driver of the car, and cyclists recognize that cycling on roads like 221 is super irresponsible.


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