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    Scientologist dies in bike-motorcycle crash

    By Times staff writer
    © St. Petersburg Times
    published November 9, 2002

    CLEARWATER -- A woman killed in a collision between a motorcycle and a bicycle Thursday night has been identified as Josianne Bergstrom, a parishioner of the Church of Scientology.

    Bergstrom, 53, was pedaling a bicycle southeaster across Drew Street about 9:40 p.m. when her bike collided with a westbound motorcycle driven by Joseph F. Beck, 39, of Clearwater, police said.

    Bergstrom was pronounced dead at the scene, which was on Drew Street west of Osceola Avenue. Beck was taken by helicopter to Bayfront Medical Center, where he was treated and released. He was wearing a helmet, police spokesman Wayne Shelor said.

    Police closed that portion of Drew Street for about five hours while they investigated. No charges were filed Friday, but the investigation was continuing.

    Church spokesman Ben Shaw said Bergstrom was from Zurich, Switzerland, but he declined to say whether she was visiting the area or living here and working as a church staffer. The police report lists her address as the Fort Harrison Hotel, but it was not clear Friday whether that was a temporary or a permanent address.

    Several members of Bergstrom's family also are parishioners, Shaw said, but he declined to say whether they live here.

    "It's a terrible incident," Shaw said. "We grieve for her loss and we're providing assistance to her family."

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