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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -
The death of a 16-year-old Hawaii Kai skateboarder has some people reflecting on the young man's life. It's also brought up the discussion once again of safety and skateboarding.
According to police, Reid Krucky had grabbed onto a friend's moped on his Hawaii Kai street. He was towed about 30 yards, but then fell off his skateboard and hit his head on the pavement. He died at the hospital.
"It's, like, an accident that could have been prevented, and, I don't know, honestly stupid. It's a tragedy," said Krucky's friend, Egon Karamehmedovic.
Investigators said Krucky was not wearing a helmet.
Some of the skateboarders at the Hawaii Kai skate park were wearing safety gear, but most skateboarders don't, even though the sport can often involve risky and dangerous stunts.
"Kids are gonna be kids. They're gonna think of crazy things to do," said skateboarder Nicholas Pestana. "Especially an incident like that, he's not at the park, he's probably hanging with his friends, he's probably not wearing a helmet. It's not cool, you know."
"My mom wants me to wear a helmet when I skate," said Karamehmedovic. "My dad says if he sees me without a helmet, he's gonna ground me." However, Karamehmedovic said he normally doesn't wear one when he's skateboarding.
In 2011, Hawaii Pacific University basketball standout Kameron Steinhoff died after he fell and hit his head while skateboarding. His family unsuccessfully pushed for a bill in last year's legislature which would have made helmets mandatory for skateboarders 16 years and younger. "And this year, nothing. Nothing," said Steinhoff's grandmother, Paula Kurashige. "How many more kids are we gonna lose because of this?"
"For new skaters I'd suggest a helmet. But for everyone, safety first, you know," said Karamehmedovic.
Pestana, an experienced skateboarder, said he feels he should preach more to younger ones about wearing a helmet. "It's super cool to wear a helmet. It's super cool to be around and last with your friends forever, and laugh and sing and do all that kind of fun stuff and enjoy your friendships forever, you know? It's important."