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Ghost Bike Installed For Owen McGrory

Written by Boston Biker on Apr 15

ssghostbike (photo via U-Hub)

On this blustery rainy day lets all take a moment to think about Owen McGrory. Who lost his life when he was struck by a sanitation truck.  One person dying on a bicycle is one person too many.

Unknown

THE heartbroken wife of Northern Ireland man Eoin McGrory killed in a hit and run incident in the US last week, has said she wants justice for her husband.

Eoin died when he was hit by a garbage truck in the Charlestown area of Boston on Thursday afternoon last.

The truck driver, Ricky Prezisoso, a father of three, has been charged with leaving the scene of an accident causing death.

He is denying the charge, claiming he thought he had hit a pothole.

The 41-year-old is on $5,000 bail and is due back in court again 19 May next.

However, Eoin’s wife of almost four months, Shanique, is refusing to accept Prezisoso’s account and says she wants “justice to be served.”

Speaking on Boston television, she said: “I loved my husband. He did not deserve to die this way.

“That’s not a good enough answer for me. I’m not agreeing with that.”

Rubbish truck driver Ricky Prezisoso denies charges over Mr McGrory’s death
She added: “All I need is justice to be served. For my whole entire family, we are all mourning and I just need justice to be done.” she said.

Members of Eoin’s family are travelling to Boston from Shantallow in Derry to help with the funeral arrangements.

The youngest child of six (three boys and three girls) of John and Theresa, of Earhart Park (originally of Carrabane Walk, Shantallow), Eoin had been living and working in the construction industry in the US for the past 16 years and married Shanique only two days before last Christmas.

A keen cyclist, the former Steelstown Primary School and Carnhill High School pupil had won several prestigious competitions in Boston and was on a training run when the incident occurred.(via)

Galen sent this in and I thought it was valuable.

 

I definitely think a post is worthy. Some food for thought, what we’re fighting for at the Statehouse and City Hall level:

 “we can push for the Vulnerable User Bill to be passed in MA. This bill is currently in the MA Statehouse being debated (although it has been there for years). This bill makes it the duty of the driver not to injure those less vulnerable on the roads, and the responsibility lies more heavily on the cars/trucks out there. Details on the bill can be found here: http://walkboston.tumblr.com/post/81604079354/handout-vulnerable-road-users-senate-1639-bike-lane
We can also push for mandatory truck guards in Boston and MA, which have proven effective in London, DC, and Canada in preventing deaths in cycling/truck crashes by 61%. Considering something like 7 of the last 8 deaths have involved trucks and buses. Details here:http://www.truckinginfo.com/channel/safety-compliance/news/story/2014/04/side-underride-guards-among-ntsb-tractor-trailer-safety-recommendations.aspx

and: http://www.ntsb.gov/doclib/recletters/2014/H-14-001-007.pdf

These can be action items that can make a real difference and actually save lives!

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Mea Cupla-The Wellesley Police Do In Fact Get It

Written by Boston Biker on Nov 16

I reported earlier this week that the Ghost Bike in Wellesley had been removed.

I was very upset that it had been reported that “items can’t be stored on public property” referring to the ghost bike. It seems however that the bike was removed at the request of the wife. Which I can understand, perhaps this woman didn’t want a daily reminder of her husbands death. And thanks to follow up correspondence it has also come to light that they are still pursuing the person who struck and killed the man. In fact they intend to place the case before a grand jury.

My apologies to the Wellesley police department, thanks for continuing to work on this case. However in the future a bit of PR goes a long way, a simple “the bike was removed at the request of the family” would have been sufficient. Cyclists often feel like its “us against the world” because so often it is. I have fallen guilty to seeing a slight where none exists. Please accept my public apologies.

Full email chain below. Thanks Matthew for this digging, your civil tone is a good example to us all.

———————————–

Dear Chief Cunningham,

I am writing to express my concern about the removal of the ghost bike at the site of Alex Motsenigos’ death. The bike was a fitting memorial to a man who was cut down in the prime of his life while riding his bike on our public roadways. While the WPD may have the luxury of viewing ghost bikes as mere “items” that are unlawfully “stored” on public property, the ghost bike was, in reality, doing more to promote the safe sharing of public roadways than the pathetic “investigation” that that the WPD is conducting into the cause of Alex’s death. I suggest that when the ghost bike is replaced by another one like it that the WPD reconsider its ill-informed decision to remove it. I am a a cyclist who regularly commutes in the town of Wellesley where I work. If the goal of the WPD is to protect and to serve, please understand that I will feel more safe and better served knowing that the WPD’s officers are out patrolling our streets and bringing closure to those affected by Alex’s death, instead of removing unsightly “items” that serve as reminders of the Department’s shortcomings.

Thank you,
Matthew

Mr. Clarke, thank you for your interest in this matter. Let me begin with a couple of questions for you, first what is your training in conducting pedestrian/bicycle accidents, second, have you been in contact with the victims family? I assume that you have not been in contact with the victims family nor should you, however, we have been in constant contact with the family, who by the way have complete confidence in our investigation, neither the victims wife or brother wanted to drive by the location of this accident and have to look at this so called memorial. Additionally, the wife did not want to subject her six year old son to the constant reminder by having to look at an old bicycle painted white, chained to a utility pole. They instead wanted to focus their energy in a much more positive manner by organizing a bicycle ride to remember the victim. So rather than acting in such a selfish, uninformed manner, and sending a missive with gratuitous comments perhaps you could take the time to be better informed. Had you sent me an email asking why we removed the bicycle I would have been happy to respond to you. Further if you asked where the investigation stood, again, I would have been happy to let you know that the investigation is currently open, active and ongoing and that we expect to put the case before a grand jury!

Best Regards Chief Cunningham

Thank you for your timely response, Chief Cunningham. I do apologize for letting my emotions get the better of me. I should have asked instead of assuming an accusatory tone. It is very encouraging to hear that you expect to put the case before a grand jury.

I can’t speak for every member of the cycling community, but it has been a very difficult four months for cyclists in the Boston area. Since Alex’s death in Wellesley, we’ve seen an additional four cyclists killed by cars and trucks, all within the span of nine weeks. I have been following the case as closely as I can, through traditional and online news outlets, which have reported that the case is, as you’ve said, open, active and ongoing. The news about an expected grand jury hearing is, however, news to me.

Thank you for taking the time to to respond about my question about why the ghost bike was removed, and for updating me on the status of the investigation. My apologies, again, for the accusatory tone of my email.

Sincerely,
Matt

Matthew, your apology is accepted i apologize if i sounded defensive but this accident is very close to home for me. I live on weston road right around the corner from both the accident and alex the victim. Please continue to follow the case as it moves forward the details will shock you when they become public. Please let others in your cycling community know as well.
Take care

Chief Cunningham


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Ghost Bike Stolen On Morrissey Blvd.

Written by Boston Biker on Nov 15

Dot Rider Blog reports that the Ghost Bike On Morrissey Boulevard for the man struck and killed there has been stolen.

A Dotbiker was passing by the site of the Ghost Bike and noticed it was gone. He looked over and saw it leaned against a trash barrel, the lock was cut and thrown in the barrel. He returned the bike to the spot and tied the bike to the post with the cut lock. A day or two later the bike was completely gone.

We checked with the State Police and DCR who we had cleared the installation with back in September. They indicated no one had taken it down at their behest. So, who did?

Maybe someone else can put one up, this time being sure to make it clear that the bike is not ride-able, a simple removal of the pedals and chain should be enough to deter thieves.


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Wellesley Police Don’t Get It

Written by Boston Biker on Nov 14

I reported this summer about a fatal hit and run in Wellesley, seems the police there are clueless when it comes to what a ghost bike is.

As The Swellesly Report, reports:

Ghost Bike WellesleyThe Ghost Bike that appeared over the weekend to memorialize cyclist Alex Motsenigos at the Weston Road/Linden Street spot where he was killed in an accident over the summer was removed at the request of the Wellesley Police.

“Items cannot be stored on public property,” (Editors note: Emphasis added) according to the police department, which says Chief Terrence Cunningham spoke to the person who put the white bike there.

“Items can’t be stored in public” Are you fucking serious?! I can’t imagine a more insensitive response to a memorial for a fallen cyclist. They didn’t even leave it up for a full week. Boston will sometimes take a ghost bike down, but they usually leave it up for a long while before they do.

The Wellesley police department clearly has no idea what it is doing, and thinks this is just some sort of trash to be picked up. Perhaps we should all contact them and let them know they are mistaken.

This poor man was hit and killed in broad daylight and as far as I know they still have not charged the driver with the crime. Maybe we should tell them we want to see more done to prosecute the killer, and less time spend removing ghost bikes.


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Kelsey Rennebohm Ghost Bike Install And Remembrance Ride

Written by Boston Biker on Jun 06

Thursday 8:00pm
Huntington Ave & Forsyth St, Boston, MA 02115

Please join the greater Boston area bicycling community at Huntington and Forsyth at 8:15PM to place a Ghost Bike for Kelsey Rennebohm. Following that, we’ll ride to Chestnut Hill Reservoir. Details on the ride are tentative and dependent on some logistics and scouting the planned area, so please check back soon.

Independent of your RSVP status on Facebook, we request you privately RSVP here for an approximate headcount for logistics: http://www.doodle.com/x4smimtinvs8dwn6

Attendance on the ride requires respectful, non-confrontational conduct and following traffic laws wherever possible; on multi-lane roads, please stick to the right-most travel lane, and leave some room on the left side both as a buffer from cars and for corkers to pass. We are in the process of seeking assistance from Boston, Brookline, and Northeastern Police.

Please have at least a front light – ideally front and rear lights.

The family is unable to attend but has requested that we record photos and video, and post descriptions of the ride for them to see. You are invited to share your photos, videos, and comments here, on youtube, etc.

More info here.

I hate that I can remember going to more than one of these events….


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Kelsey Rennebohm Ghost Bike Install And Remembrance Ride Tomorrow

Written by greg on Jun 06

A few folks in the JP biking community are organizing a ghost bike install and rememberance ride around the Chestnut Hill Reservoir for Kelsey Rennebohm who was struck and killed by a bus last week with the support of Kelsey’s brother, who is also a bicyclist. (Please see Shane’s comprehensive coverage on Kelsey from earlier this week)

More info from the Facebook event page Please spread the word, and ride safe.

Huntington Ave & Forsyth St, Boston, MA 02115
Please join the greater Boston area bicycling community at Huntington and Forsyth at 8:15PM to place a Ghost Bike for Kelsey Rennebohm
.

Following that, we’ll ride to Chestnut Hill Reservoir. Details on the ride are tentative and dependent on some logistics and scouting the planned area, so please check back soon.

Independent of your RSVP status on Facebook, we request you privately RSVP here for an approximate headcount for logistics: http://www.doodle.com/x4smimtinvs8dwn6

Attendance on the ride requires respectful, non-confrontational conduct and following traffic laws wherever possible; on multi-lane roads, please stick to the right-most travel lane, and leave some room on the left side both as a buffer from cars and for corkers to pass. We are in the process of seeking assistance from Boston, Brookline, and Northeastern Police.

Please have at least a front light – ideally front and rear lights.

The family is unable to attend but has requested that we record photos and video, and post descriptions of the ride for them to see. You are invited to share your photos, videos, and comments here, on youtube, etc.


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Posted in advocacy | 2 Comments »

Phyo Kyaw Ghost Bike

Written by Boston Biker on Jan 03

As many know one of our own was struck down recently. A Ghost bike has been put up in his honor. I hate seeing these things.

The memorial can be found at the corner of Mass Ave. and Vassar St.


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The Ghost Rider’s Bike

Written by Boston Biker on May 09

Isolate Cyclist has an amazing piece about ghost bikes that you really should read. Here is a taste.

She never imagined that life could end so abruptly, without warning, and without a hint of what was to follow. As she rode into a hollow of time, where a slow-motion scene of cars whirring around her played out without full consciousness, she sensed that something was terribly wrong.

A car was too close. Her bike and the hot metal wall fused into one with a blast of speed and the sound of clashing steel. Slowly, in an instant, the brevity of her life became a reality.

There was so much more to do. So many places to see, so many people to meet, so much more living ahead. But, a moment’s inattention can draw life to a close, unfinished and unlived.

Its really well done, go read the rest here.


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The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • #comeridewithus Twitter Campaign to @marty_walsh as well as any elected officials August 28, 2014
      TweetSo Dotriderblog has been evolving in our involvement in Twitter. It has been about six months or a year of being in the Twittersphere and we’re learning our way. The other social media format is fun but it is more … Continue reading →
      dotriderblog
    • When A Bicycle Becomes A Lock August 28, 2014
      TweetThose of us who are active in the cycling world are accustomed to regarding bicycles as vehicles. We see them as a means of transportation. We see them as a form of recreation. And, we see them as an integral … Continue reading →
      IsolateCyclist
    • MassBike Update August 27, 2014
      TweetFrom MassBike:   ———– MassDOT Funds Complete Streets Certification Program Photo courtesy of Mass in Motion Big news this week when the Healthy Transportation Compact (HTC) met in Boston. At the meeting, MassDOT announced an initial investment of up to $5 million … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Boston Bikes Update August 27, 2014
      TweetFrom Boston Bikes: ————- Last Bike Friday of the Year! Kick off your Labor Day weekend this Friday morning by riding to City Hall Plaza and enjoying breakfast with us! Bike in on your own or join a convoy from all over Greater Boston. … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • The Fun Way to Fenway! August 25, 2014
      TweetThis summer Mass Bike introduced bike valet parking at Fenway Park for ticketholders attending weekend Red Sox games. My son is a devoted Red Sox fan and a biking enthusiast, so we decided to ride our bikes to the Red … Continue reading →
      Liam
    • How Police Accident Reporting Practices Affect Bicyclists And Pedestrians August 25, 2014
      TweetAs if the statistics on car versus bicycle accidents weren’t frightening enough, I recently read the following: “Dart across Washington Street once or twice, and you probably would not pick Boston as the nation’s safest city for pedestrians. Study after … Continue reading →
      IsolateCyclist
    • Sometimes my bike is a kayak… August 25, 2014
      Tweet   I’ve got a wonderful decades old double kayak, and it’s been on many brutal adventures.  Today we took her to the Nashua River, and paddled for a couple hours up and down the stretch thru Groton.. We saw … Continue reading →
      altbiker
    • It’s coming!! Bring on the night…. August 24, 2014
      Tweet So, about a decade or so ago, give or take a few years – I met a guy – Kelsey – he was a phd chemist, he was a brillant guy, and a great biker… He showed up at … Continue reading →
      altbiker
    • Improving Parks around the Mystic River Basin August 23, 2014
      TweetRecently the Boston Cyclists Union solicited feedback on Facebook about ways DCR can improve public safety in their parks, as part of ongoing dialogue in the wake of last winter’s #WinterBiker kerfluffle.  I felt this is the best way to deliver … Continue reading →
      mattyciii
    • Boston Bikes Hiring For Bicycle Instructors August 21, 2014
      Tweettwo cool jobs from Boston bikes. ————-   Boston Bikes employs a small team of part-time, somewhat seasonal employees, primarily for Community Cycling Programs. Once you’re a part of our team, you’ll have opportunities to support all of our projects. We … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker