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Ghost Bike Removed Hours After Installed

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 24

In Lincoln apparently even placing a ghost bike is too much for the locals.

ghostbike

From the globe:

More than anything, Erik Limpaecher was surprised.

The Concord resident late Sunday night erected a “ghost bike” along a busy road in the neighboring town of Lincoln, near where a cyclist was killed in a crash on Aug. 17. By Monday morning, the memorial, a stripped-down bike painted a glaring white and adorned with a sign bearing the victim’s name, had vanished.

“I didn’t expect it to be taken down within hours,” said Limpaecher. “It was really disappointing.”

Limpaecher said he spoke to a police officer parked near where the ghost bike had been chained to a stop sign on Virginia Road. The officer told Limpaecher that the bike had been removed by the town, and would need to be placed on private property if he wanted it to stay up.

“The police officer was deferential, and said he appreciated the sentiment, but said some people don’t appreciate having such a stark reminder of a tragedy like that,” said Limpaecher. “I assume they [took it down] because of some interpretation of the town’s laws. But I would hope that they would have empathy for the family of the cyclist, and for the cycling community.”

Insensitive, and problematic. Particularly this little gem:

Higgins said the stop sign chosen as the location is at the corner of a “heavily traveled intersection, where the roadways meet at a sharp angle.”

“A more inappropriate location could not have been chosen,” he said, because it can be distracting to drivers.

Oh you mean like get them to slow down because apparently people are dying in this area while riding their bicycles?

Boston used to do this sort of thing in the bad old days, and it solved nothing and only made the problem worse.

I can’t imagine a worse way to handle this sort of thing, city of Lincoln, get your shit together. Maybe Lincoln can call up the Boston city hall and ask them how to get their heads out of their asses.


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Ghost Bike For Anita Kurmann

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 19

A ghost bike will be placed where Anita Kurmann was killed by a driver in a truck last week.  The memorial will be Thursday Aug 20th at 6:30pm at the intersection of Mass. Ave. and Beacon st.


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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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