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Friends gather at crash site to remember accident victim

September 12, 2007|By HEATHER KEELS

BOONSBORO - Friends of 19-year-old Bradley Martin gathered beside the road on Alternate U.S. 40 Tuesday evening to remember the Frederick, Md., teen who died there early Sunday and try to wrap their minds around what they're convinced was a preventable crash.

"The road's definitely poorly labeled," said Todd Powers, 21, who went to high school with Martin.

Just east of Toms Road, the crest of a hill hides a curve on the winding stretch of highway. Along the curve, the black marks where Martin's motorcycle hit are still visible on the guard rail. Martin's friends noted the lack of a sign to warn drivers of the curve as well as the broken median line as the road heads up the hill, which may create a false sense of security for drivers.

They also noticed the old car parts that littered the brush beside the road, suggesting other drivers had had difficulty with the spot.

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"One $50 sign could have prevented every single accident on this curve," Powers said.

Martin was making a late-night run to Sheetz from a friend's house the night of the crash, Powers said. Friends believe he missed his turn and had turned around just before the accident.

"He didn't know this part of the road," Powers said.

They said the 2005 Frederick High School graduate loved motorcycles and had spent much of the summer fixing up his 1993 Honda CBR F2 600, though he hadn't had much experience riding it.

Martin had "hundreds of friends," many of whom had brought flowers to leave beside the road where a cousin had erected a metal cross, said Martin's neighbor, Shawn Stright, 20, of Frederick.

"It's unreal," Stright said.

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