Cyclists took to the streets Sunday afternoon, honoring not the balmy spring weather, but instead the lives of cyclists who died in motor vehicle accidents since the start of 2010.
Every year since 2005, the NYC Street Memorial Project has held the Annual Memorial Ride and Walk. On Sunday, dozens of pedestrians and cyclists gathered to visit sites in all five boroughs where cyclists were killed.
Many site are marked by white “ghost bikes,” a veritable street side headstone that riders and walkers yesterday adorned with flowers.
The ride visited nine Brooklyn sites, with many riders joining the pack at Grand Army Plaza. From there, the group continued on to memorial site of , a cyclist who was struck by a bus on September 11th, 2010 at Washington and Atlantic Avenues.
They then congregated at the memorial site of Dominic Perez, a biker on January 20th, 2011.
At the memorial site for Perez, at the foot of the Staten Island-bound entrance ramp of the BQE, Jessie Singer, a volunteer with the Street Memorials Project, honored the list of known crash victims.
"We ride and walk with love in our hearts, with sadness for what has been lost, with rage that these crashes did not have to happen, and with hope that we never, ever have to do this again," said Singer, as the cyclists held their bikes up high above their heads in honor of the crash victims.
Memorial rides from all five boroughs converged at Borough Hall, where Street Memorials Project volunteer Nat Meysenburg dedicated a ghost bike to all the unknown and unidentified crash victims.
"Everyone who dies on the streets of New York is part of a community," said Meysenburg. "And the loss of their lives affect us all in some way."
Another participant, Upper East Side resident said Steve Vaccaro, praised the efforts toward making the roads safer and friendlier – for everyone.
"There's hundreds of people killed in New York City each year – pedestrians, and cyclists, and motorists," said Vaccaro. "This is a way to let people know that we can make another choice, that we can try to make more careful choices and have fewer deaths."
For more information, visit ghostbikes.org.