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‘Ghost bike’ memorial honors bicyclist killed in Palm Springs hit-and-run

Raymundo Jaime, 30, pictured with his 4-year-old daughter.

A memorial was held Wednesday night at the scene of a deadly hit-and-run crash in honor of a bicyclist who was killed last month in Palm Springs.

30-year-old Raymundo "Ray-Ray" Jaime was hit by a car and killed while riding his bike on S. Palm Canyon on Oct. 21. It was dark, and the driver never stopped.

Following the accident, the Coachella Valley Bike Coalition made arrangements with Jaime's family and the city of Palm Springs to mark the spot with a roadside 'ghost bike' memorial, showing the community's support for his family and calling attention to a dangerous stretch of road.

At just 4 years old, Karlee Jaime lost her father in the hit-and-run. Weeks after the crash, his wife Desiree Ayala is still trying to make sense of her loss.

"I don't have a husband no more, (Karlee) doesn't have a dad," Ayala said through tears. "I just want him back, and I'm not going to get him back."

Dressed in shirts with Jaime's face and his nickname "Ray-Ray," Karlee and Desiree took a photo in front of the growing memorial.

Members of the bike coalition hope it brings awareness to drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians.

"The traffic is awfully fast in this stretch," said John Siegel, an organizer with the Coachella Valley Bike Coalition. "It's dark."

Speaking with Raymundo's aunt, Jeanette Jaime, we turned off our camera light for a moment.

"It's dark," she said. "Its very dark. Where there is life, there should be light. And where it's dark, there's death."

She says she's considering suing the city for negligence because the tragedy could have been prevented.

The tribute now shows messages of love from fellow bikers in the community, photos of the man whose life was taken too soon, and treasured drawings from the ones who loved him most.

Like the tree the memorial surrounds, Jaime's family is strong and firmly rooted in the community. But still, they search for answers.

"(My daughter) wants to know, 'Why did he pass away; why did someone take him,' and I don't know how to answer that because I don't have the answers – why somebody hit him and kept going," Ayala said.

With no new leads, police are still searching for a suspect, who they say drove a dark-colored compact car that night, likely with front end collision damage. Anyone with information is urged to contact the Palm Springs Police Department at (760) 323-8116 or 911.

You can reach Jake on TwitterFacebook or email him at jake.ingrassia@kesq.com.

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Jake Ingrassia

Joining News Channel 3 and CBS Local 2 as a reporter, Jake is excited to be launching his broadcasting career here in the desert. Learn more about Jake here.

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