• 55°

Family, friends mourn former Grease Monkey owner killed on bike

Former Grease Monkey co-owner Kyle Eller was struck and killed while the 53-year-old was riding a bike Monday in Iredell County.
Eller of Statesville was riding at 5:22 p.m. on a route he’s taken often on Barry Oak Road between Mocksville Highway and the Rowan County line when he was struck by a large Ford pickup. N.C. Trooper Sgt. Zeb Stroup said the person who hit Eller did not stop.
The Statesville Record and Landmark reported late Tuesday that an arrest had been made in the case.
The N.C. Highway Patrol arrested Robert Kyle Harkey of Barnhill Road around 9 p.m. and charged him with felony hit-and-run causing serious injury or death. His bond was set at $75,000.
Stroup said officials had been looking for a Ford F-250 or F-350 that is between a 2011 and 2014 model.
Witnesses stayed at the scene and rendered first aid to Eller but were unsuccessful in their attempts to save him. He died at the scene.
Before the arrest, Eller’s brother, Charles, who co-owned the Salisbury Grease Monkey franchise on West Innes Street, made an appeal to anyone who saw something to come forward.
“Turn yourself in,” he said earlier of the driver of the pickup, “if you know them, come forward.”
Kyle Eller leaves behind a wife, Kristi, and two adult children: Cliff, 24, and Elizabeth, 21.
The brothers, who were very close, opened the automotive repair shop fresh out of college in June 1988. They bought the franchise in November 1987, Charles said.
A couple of years ago the two sold the franchise to the husband and wife team of David and Sheila Newell.
“He was not only a great brother and friend, but a very dedicated and loyal business partner. He always did his best and put the people of Salisbury first. He loved Salisbury and the Salisbury community,” Eller said.
Kyle was in semi-retirement, but the two remained business partners. Kyle and Charles were working as consultants/affiliate marketers for Vemma Corp.
Kyle and Charles were avid cycling, running and exercise enthusiasts.
Charles said his brother had a good heart and was a “good, dedicated, Christian man.”
“We did everything together,” Charles said.
In fact, according to longtime friend Phil Rodgers, Charles would’ve been with Kyle biking if he’d not been injured in a bicycle accident about a month ago.
He said his friend died doing what he loved. Rodgers worked as manager for Grease Monkey under the brothers, left the company and returned under the new owners. He’s tried to be there for the family during this difficult time, he said.
Rodgers said Kyle was like a brother to him and he’s disheartened to know someone would hit his friend and then leave him there.
“I can’t understand how someone would hit someone and keep going. He was a wonderful person,” he said.
Rodgers said Eller’s wife, Kristi, is doing pretty well. He said the family members are relying on their faith to get them through. Kristi and Kyle attend West Avenue Baptist Church, he said.
“He knew the Lord and she knows where he’s at,” Rodgers said.
The Ellers have another brother, Bill, who lives in the Greensboro area.
Contact reporter Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253.

Comments

Comments closed.

Education

RSS talks first steps for new federal relief totaling $66 million

China Grove

Gary’s Barbecue staff, customers look back at 50 years

News

Salisbury Lions Club names Person of the Year, Lion of the Year at 78th annual banquet

Education

Student COVID-19 numbers show first decline since plan A

High School

High school golf: Fowler competes in state tournament

News

Amazon announces new distribution center for North Carolina

News

House passes bill to bar Cooper from mandating COVID shot

Coronavirus

Rowan County sees death 302 from COVID-19; Health Department to host final mass vaccine clinic

Ask Us

Ask Us: What happened to work on South Fulton Street home?

Crime

Blotter: Woman says she was shot in hand on Lincolnton Road

Crime

Rowan Sheriff’s Office charges Salisbury man with operating illegal gambling business

Crime

Blotter: Rockwell man arrested on felony drug, breaking and entering charges

Local

Rep. Amber Baker discusses legislative session during Rowan Democrats breakfast meeting

Local

Thousands of locals, out-of-towners gather for a groovy time at annual Hippie Fest

News

N.C. Zoo ready for expansion if lawmakers OK funding

Education

RSS budgeting for tens of millions in federal COVID-19 relief funding

East Spencer

‘Back in full swing’ for the spring: East Spencer community gathers for food, fun and fellowship at Spring Fest

Local

Rowan native Lingle among those honored with NC Military Veterans Hall of Fame induction

Business

Former pro baseball player, Tar Heel standout Russ Adams finds new career with Trident Insured

Education

Profoundly gifted: Salisbury boy finishing high school, associates degree at 12

Local

Cheerwine Festival will stick to Main Street, stay away from new park in September

Lifestyle

Celebrating Rowan County’s early cabinetmakers

Education

Service Above Self announces youth challenge winners

Business

Economic Development Commission creates search tool for people seeking Rowan County jobs