Mark Douglas "Allo" Sachnik

Texas rider Mark Douglas "Allo" Sachnik, died in his sleep on Dec. 31, 2007. He was 51.

Born in Seminole, Texas, Mark was reared in New Orleans, La. He moved back to Texas in 1982. Mark held a B.S. degree from the University of Texas in Dallas and worked there as a buyer at the time of his death.

He was an enthusiastic cyclist and a member and ride leader of the Plano Bicycle Association. He met a goal of riding 10,000 miles in 2007, including more than 3,000 kilometers as a member of the Lone State Randonneurs.

In an online article, Mark listed various interests, including bicycling, photography, military history, sports, dinosaurs and politics. Mark was a member of the Knights of Columbus. He was also first vice president of the Autism Society of Collin County. In that role he helped facilitate teenage self advocacy groups. He also spoke to teachers, parents, and professionals about adolescent and adult issues related to autism.

Mark once described his struggles with that disorder: "I am an adult with Autism/Asperger who was diagnosed at an early age (language delay and sensory issues led to the diagnosis). With a lot of help from family and friends, I became verbal and was 'socialized' to where I could start school and operate at or above grade level academically. I benefited from growing up in a very large (eight siblings) and sociable family. For the most part, I can 'pass' as NT although there are a few minor 'oddities' that from time to time will get me into trouble."

Fellow PBA riders praised Mark for his energy and enthusiasm and held a memorial ride in his honor.

Franklin Clair Jensen

Franklin Clair Jensen of Cedar City, Utah, died on Dec. 30 of a brain hemorrhage "after enjoying a beautiful day bicycling in St. George with his friends," according to his published obituary, which described him as "67 years young."

A native of Elsinore, Utah, Clair was born on Dec. 17, 1940. His family moved to Las Vegas, Nevada, where he graduated from high school. Clair attended Brigham Young University where he met his wife, Sandra Lee Shupe. They enjoyed a 46-year marriage and had two children, Justin Clair and Kellie JaNell.

After graduation, Clair began work at the Division of Wildlife Resources, rising to the position of Regional Director of the DWR for Southern Utah. He retired in 1999.

An outdoor enthusiast, "his desire for exercise stayed with him throughout life which, at retirement, evolved into the passion for biking he had until the last," his obituary stated. "Outside of family duties if Clair had a free moment he was either covering cycling matters or he was on his bike. He became active with community leaders in promoting bicycling and was instrumental in establishing safe bike lanes on the streets of Cedar City.

"Saturday's organized rides with members of the Color Country Cycling Club were among the many highlights of his very active life, as well as the really big rides and races around the western states region," the obituary stated.

"Then, [last] summer he had absolutely the best time in France riding with a friend, sometimes through the rain, but what a great time they had!" the obituary stated.

In a blog entry, riding friend Lonnie Wolff offered these memories.

"I have been with him through thick and thin and literally through fire and flood. We rode in Death Valley when our tires were melting from the heat, and through vicious storms in Arizona where we fought off hypothermia," Wolff said. "In all of those situations I had never seen him down, never discouraged. In fact, it was quite the opposite. Even when pressed to our physical limits and beyond, he was a source of inspiration. You could draw strength from his fortitude in almost any situation. With Clair at your side you could overcome any hardship."