Actor Treat Williams was conscious and alert after being ejected from his motorbike, answering questions from paramedics as he lay on the sidewalk, DailyMail.com can reveal.
“He was totally alert, responding to questions,” said Matt Rapphahn, owner of Long Trail Auto on Route 30, near the crash site.
Matt, 29, was standing outside his shop when the crash happened right in front of him.
Ryan Koss, who DailyMail.com first imagines, was driving his Honda Element SUV down Route 30, turning into the auto shop parking lot when he collided with the motorcycle.
“I saw Treat flying through the air,” Matt said.
Williams, wearing a helmet, was left lying on the pavement a few feet from his motorcycle.
“The tire was still spinning,” he added.
The 71-year-old Golden Globe-nominated actor was rushed to hospital with serious injuries before being pronounced dead Monday in Vermont.
Treat Williams died Monday in a motorcycle accident in Vermont at the age of 71
Pictured for the first time: Ryan Koss, 35, was driving his Honda Element SUV on Route 30 and heading into the auto shop parking lot when he collided with Williams
Koss had an appointment at the body shop to bring his SUV in for a state inspection sticker
Williams and Koss actually knew each other, as Koss works at the theater where Williams once played American Buffalo
Koss works at the Dorset Playhouse Theater in Dorset, Vermont
Reports released by the Vermont State Police said Williams didn’t stand a chance as the Honda sped through the north lane of the V-30 in his $3,500 motorcycle.
Koss, 35, attempted to turn left onto Morse Hill Road into a car park and pulled over as he directed at around 4:53 p.m.
He was “examined by medical personnel at the scene for minor injuries”, but was not taken to hospital and was not arrested by officers.
Koss was not intoxicated, cops say, as they investigate who was responsible for the fatal incident.
Williams and Koss in all likelihood knew each other, as Koss works at the theater where Williams played American Buffalo in 2017.
The police report states that “Williams was unable to avoid a collision and was thrown from his motorcycle”.
Data collected by the Vermont Agency of Transportation revealed that there have been five incidents on this stretch of road in 12 years, three of which resulted in injuries, but only Williams was declared dead.
Koss’ car suffered extensive damage to the front passenger side, while Williams’ 1986 Honda VT700c motorcycle suffered “front end damage”.
Store owner Matt pointed out that Koss had an appointment to bring his SUV to his store for a state inspection sticker, and that Koss’s husband pulled into the parking lot in another car to come get it.
Williams – who was wearing a helmet – “suffered serious injuries” and was taken by helicopter to Albany Medical Center in New York where he was pronounced dead.
Witness to the crash, Matt Rapphahn, told DailyMail.com the actor was “fully alert, answering questions” as he lay on the sidewalk. Matt, 29, was standing outside his store when the crash happened right in front of him
Williams’ 1986 Honda VT700c motorcycle is shown. After the crash, the bike suffered ‘front damage’
Williams, wearing a helmet, was left lying on the pavement, a few feet from his motorcycle. The scene of the accident is pictured
Reports released by the Vermont State Police said Williams didn’t stand a chance as the 2008 Honda Element sped through the V-30’s north lane in his bike.
Immediately after the accident, a crowd gathered to offer help, including a nurse who lives in a nearby house. Matt directed traffic until emergency crews arrived.
“He was totally spread out and they were asking him basic questions, like ‘do you know where you are’ and ‘what’s your wife’s name’, that sort of thing,” Matt recalled. “And he was responsive. He looked like he was awake all the time because obviously when they had to move him, you could tell he was in a lot of pain. They loaded him into the ambulance and drove off.
“Honestly, I was hopeful he would pull through,” Matt said.
He said Williams was a regular customer – a classic car and motorcycle enthusiast who brought his vehicles in for repairs and restoration work.
“He stopped by the store just a few weeks ago and made appointments for his vehicles,” Matt said. “He pulled up here in his old Apache pickup truck, a 57-year-old blue Chevy. We were talking about actors on strike right now, and he sounded a bit grumpy about it. He wanted to get back to acting.
“We also talked about airplanes because he was an airplane enthusiast,” he added.
“I used to meet him all the time in town,” he said. “He shared stories. He had such a good laugh. He was a super, super nice guy. It was his house. It was his community.
He said Williams was also exceptionally generous and once wrote a check to fix the house of one of Matt’s mechanic friends after a fire.
“People here used that old cliche all day — that for someone who’s famous in Hollywood, it was totally cool,” he said.
Williams, a longtime resident of Manchester, Vermont, was also friends with actor Alec Baldwin and, according to community members, helped convince Baldwin to move to the area.
Last year, Baldwin bought an old farmhouse in Arlington, just 20 minutes from Williams’ home.
Williams’ family said in a statement: ‘It is with great sadness that we announce that our beloved Treat Williams passed away tonight in Dorset, Vermont after a fatal motorcycle accident.’ He is pictured with his wife Pam Van Sant
Treat Williams had two children Gille and Ellie
Matt said Williams was a regular customer at his store and was a classic car and motorcycle enthusiast who brought his vehicles in for repairs and restoration work.
In the street there are now markings showing where the crash happened and where Williams’ body was laid on the road
His daughter Ellie posted a photo of her parents on her Instagram account with the message: “It’s a pain I’ve never felt”. I’m absolutely broken’
He was married to actress Pam Van Sant, and together they had two children, Gille and Ellie – and often shared photos of his idyllic country life with his fans on social media. Pictured is his $1 million home in Vermont
The actor, best known for his roles in Everwood and Hair, was taking advantage of his weekend to mow the lawn of his $1million Vermont home hours before the tragedy.
He was married to actress Pam Van Sant, and together they had two children, Gille and Ellie – and often shared photos of his idyllic country life with his fans on social media.
His daughter Ellie posted a photo of her parents on her Instagram account with the message: “It’s a pain I’ve never felt”. I am absolutely overwhelmed.
Williams’ family said in a statement: “It is with great sadness that we announce that our beloved Treat Williams passed away this evening in Dorset, Vermont after a fatal motorcycle accident.
“As you can imagine, we are shocked and deeply grieving at this time. Treat was full of love for his family, for his life and for his craft, and was truly at the top of his game in all of this.
“This is all so shocking right now, but please know that Treat was deeply loved and respected by his family and all who knew him.
“We are beyond devastated and ask that you respect our privacy as we process our grief. To all of his fans, know that Treat has loved you all and continue to keep him in your hearts and prayers.