|Birth: ||Nov. 28, 1985|
|Death: ||May 24, 2007|
Family and friends mourn motorcyclist
Kevin Alvestal, 21, was killed Thursday in a solo crash
By JEREMY HAY
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
A 21-year-old Santa Rosa man killed in a motorcycle crash was mourned Friday by relatives and friends who recalled him as a talented mechanic and an avid thrill-seeker.
Speed may have played a role in the solo crash that killed Kevin Alvestal, police said.
Alvestal was returning home from his maintenance job at Vintners Inn when he crashed at Pine Meadow Drive and Coffey Lane at about 6:15 p.m. Thursday. He was pronounced dead at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital.
"He was coming down Pine Meadow at a high rate of speed, lost control, then slid down the street, across Coffey, and hit the curb on the east side of the intersection," Santa Rosa Police Sgt. Don Hasemeyer said. The crash remains under investigation but there are no indications alcohol was involved, Hasemeyer said.
Through the day Friday, grief-stricken friends and family members gathered at the accident spot, hugging and reminiscing while a memorial of flowers sprouted at the curb.
"Ever," said Kevin Fox, 21, recalling how long he and Alvestal had been friends.
Alvestal and Fox were among a group of friends who rode dirt bikes on camping trips to Cow Mountain and Lake Pillsbury, who rebuilt trucks and drove them in donuts at Alvestal"s home in northwest Santa Rosa. Crashes, scrapes and bruises were nothing new.
"We'd crash, we'd get up and do it again," said another friend, Vince Herring, 18.
Herring said he rushed to the hospital upon hearing of the crash.
"I knew he was going to be all right," Herring said. "I knew he was going to be hurting for a couple of months. Then his brother came up and grabbed me and I knew."
Alvestal was born Nov. 28, 1985, Thanksgiving Day, in Santa Rosa.
"I remember cutting his umbilical cord," said his father, Ron Alvestal, a former firefighter who flew airplanes and scuba-dived with his son several times a year. Recently, he said, Kevin had asked him for the first time to go on a dive trip he and friends had organized, in Santa Barbara.
Last year, Alvestal said, on a trip to visit family in Sweden, his youngest son trained in a flight simulator for a Boeing 737-800 commercial jet, making an unassisted Category 3 landing, which is defined as with visibility less than 200 feet.
"He was an adrenaline junkie, just like his father," said Alvestal, who has three older sons.
In 2002, after he turned 16, Kevin Alvestal took advantage of a change in Federal Aviation Administration regulations that allowed people 16 and over to make tandem skydives.
By then he was piloting acrobatic planes and had earned his scuba rescue certification. The Press Democrat accompanied him on his first jump trip, for which Alvestal applied extra gel to his spiked blond hair.
His first words upon landing were: "That was sick. That was the greatest thing ever."
The family rule was no street motorcycles, Ron Alvestal said. Of his son, he said, "He broke the house rule."
He said: "I can"t put blame on anybody. But he loved life, he was an adrenaline junkie, he loved exploring."
He was asked if he felt the need to say anything to others like his son: well-loved young men who love their thrills.
He said, "The action speaks for itself, speed kills. Motorcycles."
Other survivors include his mother, Kathleen Alvestal, brother Derrick Alvestal and half-brothers Matthew and Patrick Siemsen, all of Santa Rosa.
Services are pending.
ALVESTAL, Kevin - November 28, 1985 - May 24, 2007. Born and raised in Santa Rosa, Kevin was taken from this life much too soon. We would like to express our appreciation to the Press Democrat for the article following Kevin's tragic accident. Kevin was employed by Vintner's Inn and spent much of his free time scuba diving, flying, water skiing, rebuilding trucks, and riding dirt bikes. Kevin is survived by his parents, Kathy and Ron Alvestal, brothers Patrick Siemsen (Rebecca), Matthew Siemsen, and Derrick Alvestal, grandparents Hans and Irene Alvestal of Sweden and LaVerne Petersen of Petaluma, niece Siena Siemsen as well as many aunts, uncles and cousins in California, Idaho, Montana and Sweden. His infectious smile will be greatly missed by his family, all his very special friends, and every person he met. Friends are invited to attend a Visitation at SANTA ROSA MORTUARY EGGEN & LANCE CHAPEL 1540 Mendocino Ave. Santa Rosa, 545-3747, on Saturday June 2nd from Noon to 8:00 p.m. The family will receive visitors from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. A Graveside Service will be at Santa Rosa Memorial Park, at 10:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 3rd, followed by a Celebration of Kevin's Life at the family home at 3200 Oak Farm Lane, Santa Rosa at noon. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Dragonfly Aviation for a Flight Training Scholarship Fund in Kevin's name or to Giant Steps Therapeutic Equestrian Center.
Published in the Press Democrat on 5/31/2007.
Santa Rosa Memorial Park
Created by: Geraldine "Gerry" Hume...
Record added: May 25, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 19528317