The family of the late Michael Goolaerts have reached out to fans who were present at the scene where the young rider fell from his bike during Paris-Roubaix.
Kristof Goolaerts, Michael’s brother, has issued a plea to anyone who was there on that fateful day to help him and his family be reunited with the Veranda’s Willems-Crelan rider’s sunglasses.
In a post to Facebook Kristof said that the sunglasses were the rider’s favourite and “would love them back.”
Dear cycling fans,
Michael's family is looking for the sunglasses he wore during @Paris_Roubaix. They got lost during this tragic day. It would mean the world to them if they could be recovered.
Any help would be most welcome.
— Veranda’s Willems – Crelan Pro Cycling Team (@Snipercycling) June 13, 2018
“On the 8th of April, my brother Michael Goolaerts fell and later past away during the cycling race Paris-Roubaix due to a cardiac arrest.” he said.
“At the time of his fall, he was wearing sunglasses of the brand ‘100%’. Afterwards we were not able to retrieve them. If someone has found and/or taken his glasses, or someone has seen them being picked up, could you please report this to me? We would love to have them back.”
The sunglasses, a pair of 100% Speedcraft, were in fact a gift from Kristof for his brother’s birthday.
“His sunglasses have tremendous emotional value for us. They were his favourite glasses and he also received them from me as a birthday present.
“Thank you in advance for sharing. I will be eternally grateful to the finder.”
After crashing to the deck, Goolaerts was attended to at the road side during the race before being flown to a hospital in Lille where he later was pronounced dead.
It was revealed later in an autospy that the rider had suffered from a cardiac arrest while riding, where his heart stopped sending him to the ground.
Goolaerts memory has been immortalised after Paris-Roubaix organisers dedicated a sector of the race’s pavé to the late rider.