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Bicyclist dead after being hit in NW OKC Thursday

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A chef at a popular downtown Oklahoma City restaurant died Thursday after he was struck by a vehicle while riding his bike near the Plaza District.

About 2:40 a.m. Thursday, Chad Ryan Epley, 31, was riding a bicycle west on NW 16, near Classen Boulevard. Epley was struck by a vehicle traveling south on Classen Boulevard that then left the scene, police said. Investigators determined that Epley's bicycle was dragged to NW 6 and Western Avenue.

Epley, who was not wearing a helmet, was taken to a local hospital with severe head injuries.

Earlier this year, Epley was named co-executive chef at Vast, a restaurant located at the top of the Devon Tower. He previously served as the sous chef at the restaurant.

Restaurant officials told The Oklahoman Thursday afternoon that Epley had died from injuries he suffered in the collision.

The restaurant announced on Facebook that they would be closed Thursday evening and would be re-opening for normal business hours Friday.

Friends of Epley took to Facebook Thursday to mourn the death of the young chef.

Beep Seikel wrote that he couldn’t think of where he would be if he hadn’t met Epley, adding, “love you brother and you will forever be missed RIP.”

“Going to miss you so much Chad Epley. Rest easy love,” wrote Olivia Blum.  

A GoFundMe page has been established to help Epley's family with funeral expenses, to donate, go to www.gofundme.com/chad-epley-memorial.

 No information about the vehicle that hit Epley has been released. Anyone with information about the incident should call Crime Stoppers at 235-7300.

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