Almanac

Viewpoint - January 8, 2014

Letter: A farewell to Mike Harding

After a year-long illness, local bicycle legend Mike Harding left us in the dust on Dec. 14 at the age of 74.

Many in Menlo Park and San Mateo County remember Mike as a bicyclist whose accomplishments were considerable and impressive. He had ridden almost every back road and byway in the nine Bay Area counties and beyond, including over 30 Davis Double centuries, dozens of Mt. Hamilton summits, rain, shine and even snow. He rode every Paris-Brest-Paris Brevet, the Sequoia Centuries, and many other organized, disorganized and impromptu rides. He was a tireless and dependable ride leader for the Western Wheeler's Club. Serious rain was rarely cause to cancel one of Mike's rides and never unpleasant enough for him to turn back in the middle.

He put in hundreds of hours as a Menlo Park bicycle commissioner, a member of the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition's peninsula committee, a member and later liaison with the San Mateo County Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee of CCAG, dealing with contentious as well as mind-numbing issues year after year with uncommon enthusiasm and generosity. Not only did he usually ride his bike to these meetings, he was a regular bike commuter to his tech and engineering jobs.

When riding or walking over the San Mateo Drive bike bridge in Menlo Park, remember Mike whose dogged perseverance many years ago made this important crossing of San Francisquito Creek a reality despite initial opposition from neighboring residents.

He leaves many friends who have fond and vivid memories of him. His bride of 53 years, Diane Harding and two sons were with him to the end. Mike Harding, bicyclist and exemplary human being, will be missed. May his example inspire us all on and off the bike.

Steve Schmidt, chair

San Mateo County Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee

Comments

Posted by Judy Leep, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jan 9, 2014 at 7:51 pm

Thank you, Steve, for writing such a nice letter about my neighbor, Mike Harding. Would it be possible to name the San Mateo Drive bike bridge the Mike Harding Bike Bridge as a way of honoring him and all the work he loved doing for the biking community?


Posted by RIP, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jan 9, 2014 at 11:06 pm

RIP Mr. Harding. Instead of renaming an old project for Mr Harding, how about naming a new project in his honor? I am sure he would be proud to see the San Francisco Bay Trail segment between the Dumbarton Bridge and East Palo Alto finally completed.


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