Big Island man killed in motorcycle crash marks county’s 21st traffic death this year

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Published: Jul. 5, 2022 at 12:38 PM HST|Updated: Jul. 5, 2022 at 5:41 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A 58-year-old Pepe’ekeō man is dead after a motorcycle crash Monday night.

Hawaii Island police identified him as Malvin Reyes.

The county said he was a driver for the Department of Environmental Management (DEM) Solid Waste Division. He was an 18-year veteran of the county, and the mayor described him as a “dedicated public servant.”

Mayor Mitch Roth issued a statement Tuesday saying, “Our hearts go out to the Reyes ʻohana as we mourn the loss of a dedicated public servant, father, and friend. The sudden loss is felt deeply as we continue to hear stories from his coworkers and other close friends within our office. At this time, we ask that the community reflect on our loved ones lost and hug those still here. We also ask that residents travel safely on our roadways, buckle up, and be vigilant of others in Malvin’s honor.”

Investigators said Reyes was driving a motorcycle when he hit three vehicles on Highway 19 in Honomū. It happened around 8:50 p.m. between the 13 and 14 mile markers.

Reyes was heading south when he crossed the center line and sideswiped an SUV, police said. He went on to sideswipe a four-door sedan, before crashing head-on to a third vehicle.

Reyes was taken to a Hilo Medical Center where he was pronounced dead around 11:30 p.m.

He wasn’t wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, according to police. Investigators are working to find out if alcohol, drugs or speed were contributing factors.

The other drivers involved in the crash were uninjured.

Authorities have launched a negligent homicide investigation. This marks the island’s 21st traffic fatality of 2022, compared to 12 this same time last year.

The DEM also issued a statement saying in part, “The County family grieves the loss of one of our own. Malvin was an excellent employee, a skilled driver, and a better friend. He was supportive of his coworkers, he was proud of his work, he was willing to help when asked, and with his passing, he will be missed.”

Witnesses to the crash are being asked to call 808-961-2339.

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