Alejandro Acosta was often at the back of the pack on group rides.
Not because the 39-year-old Boulder resident was particularly slow on a bicycle, but because he wanted to make sure no one was left behind.
“He was the person who made sure all the ducklings were making it to the turnaround point of the ride,” said Jay Weber, a friend and fellow cyclist.
“He would make sure that someone else was in charge of leading the ride but he would never lead it. He was the person who would bring up the rear and make sure that anyone having mechanical issues or who was feeling weak made it home safely.”
Acosta died on July 15 after he was struck by a driver who turned left in front of him on Lee Hill Road. There have been no charges filed from the incident, and the circumstances of the collision remain under review by the Boulder County District Attorney’s Office.
Friends and loved ones said they will remember Acosta’s unfailing kindness and happiness. Chris Blick met Acosta through a group ride at Sanitas Brewing that Blick leads.
“He was particularly good about actively being a friend, not just being around, but he would take initiative and try to help out wherever he could,” Blick said.
In one instance, Blick started his own bike shop and sent out links to the shop’s bare-bones website that he built himself. After a few months, Acosta offered to build him a better website.
“He politely said, ‘Hey man, I think what you’re doing is really cool and I think your website is not cool enough for how cool it is,” Blick said.
Weber also met Acosta through the weekly Sanitas ride, but when the rides were put on hold because of the pandemic, Acosta and Weber continued riding together. Those rides remain some of Weber’s favorite memories of his friend, he said.
“When you were around him, he was the unofficial life of the party because of how happy and encouraging he was,” Weber said.
Cycling in Boulder can at times feel elitist, Blick said, but Acosta was a warrior for just the opposite — to make sure everyone felt like they were good enough.
“He really exemplified community, both from a cycling standpoint and from a general standpoint of making people feel like they were a part of something,” Blick said.
Acosta moved to Boulder in 2017 with his wife, Anna, according to his obituary, and had worked as an artist, designer, computer programmer and coder. His current job was with Boulder tech startup ZingFit.
He was also a soon-to-be father. A GoFundMe page that has raised more than $50,000 to benefit Acosta’s family is filled with similar stories to Blick’s and Weber’s, stories of a genuinely joyful, positive person who loved others well.
“I hope people remember how happy he was,” Blick said. “I don’t know if people are good at making themselves happy, but he was good at it. He refused to be unhappy. I also hope they remember some of that community spirit, how good it can feel to be the reason someone grows, or learns something new, or does something they didn’t think they could do through a little bit of help.”