Seth Vidal killed by hit & run driver

Seth Vidal, a well known open source software contributor, was cycling near his home in Durham, NC last night when he was struck by a hit-and-run driver. The 36 year old software developer was pronounced dead after he was taken to Duke hospital.

Seth Vidal from his Twitter Account

Witnesses describe a late 90s or early 2000s dark colored sedan that slowed then swerved before hitting Vidal on Hillendale Road near I-85. Police are asking the public for help in identifying the suspect.

Vidal was a emeritus board member of the Fedora Project and an employee at Red Hat, Inc. where he developed the Yellowdog Updater Modified (yum), a command-line tool to manage software packages for Linux distributions.

Although Vidal is known around the world for his contributions to open source software, local friends describe him as a valuable and giving member of the local cycling community who worked to improve cycling and walking conditions in his area.


Russ Roca and Laura Crawford met with Vidal when they traveled through Durham. Vidal describes the local cycling in this video.

Photo taken from Seth Vidal’s Twitter profile.


  1. What is it going to take for things to improve? Man, I totally sick of hearing about this happening and knowing that it will continue to keep happening.

    We need drivers to get cyclists on the brain and for people to drop their cell phones and freaking pay attention….full attention….when they are driving.

  2. It sounds worse than that — if the drive slowed down, then swerved and hit him (as described), it sounds like it was pre-meditated and intentional.

  3. Yea, I’m inclined to think like Liz. **If** they find the guy, we can count on “I didn’t see him! Too bad, so sad!” and no charges. Slick way to murder somebody…

  4. I agree with Liz S. and Mark Brewster. Also, why these collisions are called “accidents” by cops and the media is beyond me. Killing someone with any other implement is considered murder.

  5. The driver turned himself in a half day later,
    …plenty of time to sober up.

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