Oregonian Joseph Bell, who planned to walk across the US to create awareness about bullying, was struck and killed by a tractor trailer in Colorado, ABC News reports.
Bell started the walk from Oregon to New York in April after his 15-year-old gay son, Jadin, who had been tormented repeatedly about his sexuality, committed suicide.
According to the report, police say that the truck's driver, Kenneth Raven, had fallen asleep at the wheel and has been cited for careless driving resulting in death. But the trucking company Raven works for says he denies falling asleep.
Dozens of people are leaving messages on Bell's Facebook page, Joe's Walk for Change, expressing not only shock and sadness at the news of his death, but hope that his action and message will inspire others.
One commenter wrote, "I don't even know what to say. Let's please keep this page going as a tribute to them both."