Motorcyclists plead for caution after two fatal crashes within an hour

Motorcyclists plead for caution after two fatal crashes within an hour
GRAHAM, Wash. -- Two deadly motorcycle crashes in the span of an hour Wednesday has other motorcyclists pleading for drivers to keep an eye out for them.

Perry Panagiotu watched in horror as Orion "OJ" Silvernail was killed right in front his Graham fireworks stand.

"It was terrible. He wasn't speeding. That guy just didn't see him," Panagiotu said. "It happened so quickly and, so sad."

The Pierce County Sheriff's Department says a car turning left turned right into Silvernail's path as people watched in shock.

"It's a sad situation for the family, for everyone," said Carl Allen Sivernail's brother-in-law. "You’ve got to remember to look a double time for motorcyclists."

It happened less than a hour after motorcyclist Sarah Noble was hit and killed on Highway 101 near Shelton. The State Patrol said a car coming the other direction tried passing a car and hit the 33-year-old Olympia woman head-on.

Always assume the worst, always," said motorcycle rider Kathy Hoskinson.

Hoskinson and husband John are heading out on their motorcycles knowing full well they're invisible to some drivers.

"Even though the other driver looks right at you, they don't see you," John Hoskinson said.

Motorcyclists say it's just part of being on the road -- always be ready for someone to turn in front of you.

"First time I stood up and went over the top," said motorcycle rider Rodney Cromheecke. "The second time I went under the car. Both times I wasn't hurt, though."

In Silvernail's case, he died instantly. But the little dog who rode with him constantly survived, and everyone came looking for little Tia -- a tiny chihuahua who was OJ's constant companion.

"Just help us find her," said Lisa Williams, a family friend. "He loved her more than anything in the world. She went everywhere with him."

Tia disappeared into the woods after the crash. The family wants you to keep a careful watch for her, and more importantly a careful watch for motorcyclists as you drive down the road.

Investigators say drugs and alcohol do not appear to be involved in either crash, and so far neither driver has been cited.