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Cyclist, hit by car, cheats death twice

A Valley Springs man is recovering at home after suffering major injuries Sunday when he was struck by a car while bicycling on Highway 12 near Burson Road.

Jack Costa, 57, was riding his bicycle west on the highway about 4:20 p.m. when he was approached from behind by a 2003 Ford driven by Elijah R. Nhy, of Lodi.


Nhy, 24, was distracted as he took off his shirt to wipe sweat from his eyes, according to a California Highway Patrol report. 

His car drifted onto the shoulder, hitting Costa from behind at about 40 mph, the report said.

Costa was thrown from his bike.

He was transported by helicopter to Memorial Medical Center in Modesto.

His wife, Melissa Costa, said this morning that her husband suffered head lacerations requiring staples, but was able to go home after getting up and walking around.

She said he had no broken bones, perhaps because “he has a lot of hardware,” the result of an ultralight accident nine years ago.

She described her husband, a retiree, as “hard core” into bicycling.

And he’s defied death twice.

From now on, she said, “We’ll keep him in bubble wrap.”

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