Wednesday 17th July 1974
Country musician Don Rich (32) who helped develop the Bakersfield sound in the early 1960s was killed in a motorcycle accident. He had been en route to join his family for vacation on the central coast of California. For unknown reasons, his motorcycle hit a center divider on northbound Highway 1 at Yerba Buena Road in Morro Bay. He was pronounced dead on arrival at the then Sierra Vista Hospital in San Luis Obispo at 10:55 that evening, 50 minutes after the incident was reported. California Highway Patrol officials stated that there were no skid marks and no apparent mechanical problems.