A Tribute to Roy Wallack from His Son

Well-known mountain bike journalist, competitor and author Roy M. Wallack died following a crash on his mountain bike this past Saturday. His son, Joey, shared a tribute to his dad with some memories of their life and travels together:

Joey (left) and his dad, the late Roy Wallack. (Photo courtesy Joey Wallack)

“To many, my dad, Roy M. Wallack was the master of bikes, journalism, and storytelling. I will remember him as many things, like as the KFC King, The Tommy’s Terminator, and the Sardine Slurper. Sardine Slurper, cause he had no time to sit down and have pasta when we have 500 miles to cover in 2 weeks. That’s how he was.

“A true adventurer

“He and I had embarked on 2 different 500-mile bike trips, first from Portland to Yellowstone and then from Washington DC to Cleveland. His quest for adventure was international, taking me and my mom, Elsa everywhere from Panama, Peru, Canada, Costa Rica, Spain, Australia with Shoshanna McQuade, Israel and Jordan. At every location and every landmark, he would prop his phone on top of some rocks or garbage so he could take the perfect picture of us.

Posing for a father-and-son selfie at Crater Lake National Park in Oregon.  (Photo courtesy of Joey Wallack)

“A father who rose above and beyond to make sure I got to school in style: taking me on the tandem, a two-seater bike was his passion up until middle school when it wasn’t “cool” to ride with him to school anymore. When I was doing my last year of soccer, the league needed a parent to rise to the occasion and coach the team. My dad was THAT parent who took the task of coaching the team of late sign-ons. He got to see me get a bachelor’s degree.

Checking out the solar eclipse a few years ago. (Photo courtesy of Joey Wallack)

A Storyteller

“As a journalist, he documented everything, he would work early mornings and late nights grinding out article after article, working for almost nothing, because the real pay was in the experiences. His passion was exploring and creating rewarding experiences that would last a lifetime, something I had taken for granted until recently.

Clowning it up at Lava Beds National Monument in Tulelake, California.  (Photo courtesy of Joey Wallack)

“I could go on forever about the man who shaped who I am. A tragedy of a rich life cut much too short, The author of Bike For Life: How to Ride to 100  passed away doing what he loved at 64.

“For all of you who have posted your memories or who have reached out to my family: thank you all from the bottom of our hearts, and let his memory live on.” —Joey Wallack

Joey (left)  and Roy Wallack— never a dull moment. (Photo courtesy Joey Wallach)