Southampton motorcyclist Edward Nied Jr. succumbs to injuries after collision with bear

Laste modified: Sunday, November 10, 2013
WESTFIELD — A Southampton motorcyclist who succumbed to his injuries after colliding with a bear Wednesday morning is remembered as a conservationist, photographer and friend.

Edward Nied Jr., 63, of Dugan Lane, died Thursday at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield from injuries he suffered in the Wednesday morning collision, police said.

Robert Floyd, owner of the Robert Floyd Photo Gallery and Learning Center in Southampton, described Nied as a “dear friend” and an “incredible photographer.”

Floyd said Nied was especially fascinated with herpetology, the study of amphibians such as frogs and salamanders.

Nied maintained a website with some of his nature photography and short essays on wildlife.

Nied was a dedicated conservationist and member of the Southampton Conservation Commission and was well respected in the community for his efforts, Floyd said.

A witness told police that Nied was riding his motorcycle in Westfield at about 8 a.m. Wednesday when a large black bear emerged from the east side of the road and ran into the motorcycle, striking it broadside and sending Nied out of control and tumbling to the ground.

The bear ran back the way it came and disappeared. Witnesses said it did not appear to be seriously injured.

Nied was taken to Baystate Medical Center, where he died from his injuries Thursday.

“The irony is, he’s done more than most people in Southampton to preserve wildlife habitats,” Floyd said. “Because of the intense development in that area, the bear had no place to go.”

“To me, personally, it’s wickedly ironic,” Floyd said.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report. Bob Dunn can be reached at bdunn@gazettenet.com.