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Former Washington Co. boy killed in dirt bike accident

Ronald Koger III moved to Florida with his father six weeks ago

July 21, 2011|By DAN DEARTH | dan.dearth@herald-mail.com
  • Ronald Koger III, died Tuesday when his dirt bike collided with an all-terrain vehicle near Cape Coral, Fla.
Submitted photo

A 13-year-old Washington County boy who moved with his father to Florida just six weeks ago will return home Friday to be buried.

Ron Koger said his son, Ronald Koger III, died Tuesday when his dirt bike collided with an all-terrain vehicle near Cape Coral, Fla.

"He was always happy," Ron Koger said Thursday during a telephone interview. "He was an all-American boy. He died what he loved doing."

Ronald Koger III also was the son of Valerie Koger.

Koger said he and his son were at an undeveloped piece of land where people go to swim and ride motorcycles. He said he was swimming when his son came over a hill to say he just learned something new.

"He rode a wheelie for about 30 feet," Koger said. "He said, 'I love you, dad.' I said, 'I love you, too.'"

Ambulances pulled into the development about 10 minutes later, Koger said. He got out of the water, jumped in his truck and drove the equivalent of about three blocks to where the ambulances had parked.

"I saw my son laying on the ground," he said. "They pronounced him dead at the hospital."

The accident occurred at about 5 p.m. Tuesday when Ron Koger III's dirt bike collided head-on with an ATV that was being ridden by Matthew Buldo, 28, of Cape Coral, according to a news release from the Lee County (Fla.) Sheriff's Office.

Buldo suffered a head injury and was taken to Lee Memorial Hospital in Fort Myers, Fla. He was listed in good condition Thursday afternoon, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Koger said he recently was divorced and moved with his son to Florida to start a new life.

"We decided to come down here and make a partnership," he said. "We put everything in a trailer and rolled on down."

Some of his son's former classmates at Springfield Elementary School in Williamsport started a Facebook page Tuesday night to mourn the loss of their friend.

Sarah Nichols, 13, said she became close with "Ronnie" during the last school year when he started to date her best friend.

"We used to do everything together," she said. "He liked playing pranks a lot. He was a really good friend."

Thirteen-year-old Courtney Baker said the two met in school last year. They sat together in science and social studies classes and were always partners during school projects.

"He was a great guy," she said. "He was never mean. If I had friend problems, he always gave good advice."

Courtney said the two remained friends after he moved and kept in touch through Facebook and text messages.

"I really miss Ron," she said. "It's a shame it happened. My prayers go out to his family."

Posts on the Facebook page say the students are trying to arrange a memorial service at the school, but nothing had been scheduled as of Thursday afternoon.

Ron Koger said he has no reason to stay in Florida and plans to move back to Maryland, where Ronnie will be buried next week.

He said he had to sell everything he owned to fly his son's body to Baltimore.

"I don't have anything," he said. "When I come back to Maryland, I'm coming back with my clothes and his. That's it."

Valerie Koger could not be reached for comment.

Ronald Koger III also is survived by five siblings: Donna Koger, Santana Allen, Tabatha Allen, June Allen and Travis Allen.

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