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Bicyclist Killed By Van Was Riding To Homeless Shelter, Family Says

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- The family of a bicyclist killed in Minneapolis this week is speaking out for the first time since her death.

The parents of Jill Friedrich, 34, have identified her as the woman killed when the experienced cyclist was struck by a van in north Minneapolis.

Jill Friedrich
(credit: CBS)

Her family says she was on her way to a homeless shelter as part of volunteering with Mile In My Shoes. The organization brings people together from diverse backgrounds, including those in need, out for a run.

"She went beyond the expectations of any parent," Jayne Fox, Friedrich's mother, said.

Friedrich was the family's only daughter. She was an accomplished biochemist and a published biomedical researcher at the University of Minnesota. She was also an avid runner and had finished several marathons. But family always came first.

"I sent her a text and asked her if she wanted to have lunch [Thursday]," Peter Frisch, Friedrich's father, said.

Friedrich was struck while riding her bike at Lowry Avenue North and Second Street North in Minneapolis.  She died later that day at the hospital. The family told WCCO they wanted to thank the doctors and staff that tried to save her.

Bicyclist Struck
(credit: CBS)

Friedrich also leaves behind a brother, and her husband of three years. The two were together for more than a decade.

"They were the love, absolutely, of each other's lives," Fox said.

Friedrich's parents take comfort in the way their daughter gave her gifts in science to research, and her athleticism was used in volunteering  It's that giving nature that is helping her family keep her spirit alive.

"She's in the beautiful fluffy clouds in the sky, she's a part the universe, and she will be a part of the stars that shine at night," Fox said. "She will always be there for me in that way."

Friedrich's parents say she always wore her helmet when she biked, including the day of the accident.

There will be a celebration of life at Jax Cafe Tuesday night 5-8 p.m.

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