This week, the news section talked about ghost bikes, memorials constructed around the state to mark the spot where a cyclist was killed by a vehicle. One went up in Laguna for the young activist who was riding across the country to raise money for breast cancer research.
The all-white bikes first began appearing in St. Louis, according to this site, but they've been installed across the country. They're reminders to drivers that we need to be aware and considerate of cyclists.
But many municipalities remove the ghost bikes. New Mexico's seen it happen. That bike in Laguna was removed by the state's Transportation Department. It was later re-erected after one activist found her way through some red tape. New York City is considering a adding a rule to the books on the "removal of derelict bicycles."
The problem, some say, is that the bikes are not treated as descansos, or traditional roadside memorials. Alibi.com ran a special websclusive article by Patrick Lohmann this week about the fight to keep ghost bikes in New Mexico.
A Question of Descansos
The city and state have gone back and forth on whether they will allow ghost bikes to stand. Jennifer Buntz, president of the Duke City Wheelmen Foundation, champions the memorials for cyclists killed by motorists around the state.
The Ghost Bike in Laguna
John Anczarski, 19, was cycling across the country with three friends to raise money for breast cancer research. The University of Colorado student began his trip in Pennsylvania and was heading for San Diego. He was 10 days from his destination on June 21 when an SUV in Laguna, N.M., ran him off the road. He suffered head trauma and died the next day at UNM Hospital.
Remember the Riders
Foundation fights to keep ghost bikes standing
Three months after cyclist David Anderson was killed near Paseo del Norte and Rio Grande Boulevard, the black auto paint smeared on a nearby brick wall is beginning to peel off. Fresh silver fencing replaced about 20 feet of rusty fence destroyed by a car careening off the road. It, too, is beginning to weather. And the flowers placed in front of Anderson’s roadside memorial have long since wilted.