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Cyclist's Family Files Wrongful Death Suit Against Alleged Driver

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) -- The family of a man killed while riding his bike on Key Biscayne last month has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver who allegedly hit him.

Walter Reyes, 51, was killed last month as he and his friend Henry Hernandez, 40, rode their bikes along Crandon Boulevard.

They were training for the Dolphins Cycling Challenge to benefit cancer research.

"I guess it's fitting that he died doing something to help others," said Reyes's widow Maribel Reyes, adding, "It's not just a loss for the family for me and the girls, it's a loss for the community."

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Police say 21-year-old Alejandro Alvarez was drunk when he slammed into the cyclists on the morning of January 21st, 2015.  He allegedly left the scene then returned a short time later.

Both Alejandro Alvarez and his father Rodrigo Alvarez were named in the lawsuit.  Lawyers for the Reyes family say Rodrigo Alvarez owns the car his son was driving at the time of the crash.

"Actions have consequences," said Maribel Reyes.  "Stupid actions have tragic consequences."

"Driving while under the influence is something completely preventable," added daughter Jennifer Reyes, 19.  "There are multiple options to avoid getting behind the wheel. There are no excuses," she continued.

No one at the Alvarez home wanted to comment about the crash or the lawsuit, but the widow of another crash victim is speaking out.  Patty Cohen's husband Aaron Cohen was also killed while riding his bike on the Rickenbacker in 2012.

"I'm heartbroken that another family is going through the exact same thing we went through.  I can't believe we would let that happen again," said Cohen.

She and the Reyes family are trying to make sure the community works to prevent drunk driving and hit and run crashes. They're urging anyone who has had too much to drink to call a cab, a friend, or a ride service.

"If there's anything that comes out of this that can save somebody's life I'm going to do it, and that's my mission now," said Maribel Reyes.

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