Man Dies In Unity Crash

Police: Motorcyclist Didn’t Have Helmet

Unity — A 49-year-old Unity man died late Saturday night after he lost control of his motorcycle while driving around a curve, police said.

Paul J. Ferland was not wearing a helmet while operating his 1997 Harley Davidson motorcycle as he traveled east on Stage Road and failed to navigate a corner, causing him to crash off the roadway, State Police Sgt. Phillip Gaiser said.

Police were called to Stage Road at 11 p.m. for the single vehicle collision. Ferland was pronounced dead at the scene. No other vehicles or people were involved.

The accident happened on a clear, dry night, and Gaiser said he could not say whether alcohol was involved. The crash is still under investigation and a toxicology report is planned, Gaiser said.

Gaiser also said he would not speculate whether speed was a factor.

Ferland graduated from Stevens High School and lived in Unity all his life, his cousin Moe Ferland said yesterday. He was an iron worker and spent most of his life working in metal construction and building bridges, Moe Ferland said.

Ferland came from a big family. His dad was one of nine children, Moe Ferland said, and Ferland has four brothers and three sisters.

Other family members did not return calls last night.

Ferland was an avid motorcycle rider who picked up the hobby when he was a teenager, his cousin said. He also was an outdoorsman who loved to hunt, fish and ride his snowmobile.

Moe Ferland described his cousin as mild and even-tempered. He was a good-looking man who was always smiling and always happy, Moe Ferland added.

“He was just an all-around nice guy,” Moe Ferland said. “A very hard worker and family guy. He loved life and it was too short for him.”

Gaiser added that Saturday’s accident was one of several that State Police have responded to since the weather turned. On Sunday, the state police had heard reports of motorcycle crashes in Keene and Swanzey.

The accident is still under investigation and anyone with information is asked to call Trooper Jason Yarosz at 603-223-8494.

Sarah Brubeck can be reached at or 603-727-3223.